Without quantum security, the future of our blockchain is uncertain

News from two teams of Chinese scientists achieve Quantum advantage-a technical term that indicates when a computer can perform functions beyond classical computers-may be a signal that we have truly entered a new era. And Google’s 54-qubit quantum processor Sycamore, became As the first well-known example of early quantum computing, the latest news from Hefei University of Science and Technology of China is the best proof that we cross the ruby ??of information.

But while there are many reasons to be excited about these developments, there are also reasons to be concerned. Although we may all be eagerly waiting for the day when we can predict traffic congestion, entrust animal testing to history books, or determine the likelihood of someone suffering from cancer, and then design a unique treatment method-all in a matter of seconds .

Perhaps the most frightening thing for a society so dependent on the Internet is that quantum-level computing puts all our digital infrastructure at risk. Our contemporary Internet is based on cryptography-the use of codes and keys to protect private communications and data storage. But for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (Bitcoin) And ether (Ethereum), for this concept is basic, a sufficiently powerful quantum computer may mean theft worth billions of dollars or the destruction of the entire blockchain. Since digital signatures are suddenly easy to forge, the concept of wallet “ownership” seems weird.

related: Talk about the digital future: quantum computing and cryptography

When I first pioneered digital currency in the late 1980s, quantum computers were just a theoretical proposition. Although we all know that it is inevitable (those who work in technology are usually keenly aware that the future is coming to us at an extremely fast rate), in a world where we haven’t even seen the first web browser, We didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about things that looked like deep future technology even then.

Vulnerabilities in quantum computing

However, times have changed. In the next three decades, cryptocurrencies will be perfected and store nearly $3 trillion in value.An analysis by Deloitte Established More than 25% of Bitcoin may be stolen in an attack, and at the time of writing, its value is close to 300 billion U.S. dollars.This will make it three thousand times more profitable than the next The best thing robbery.When you consider that 10% of world GDP is expected By 2025, held in the form of encrypted currency, this vulnerability will soon turn from worrying to terrible. Not only is quantum computing coming soon, but we have never been more vulnerable than we are now.

In addition, history tells us that we should be afraid of not only hackers, cyber terrorists and criminal organizations, but also governments. The revelations of Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden over the past decade have shown the world what the world’s most powerful government can (and will) do without anyone’s attention. Authoritarian countries like Russia and China have their complicated methods to coerce and control their people. Quantum computing will only enhance their tyranny.

Although we already know some early examples of quantum computing, it is foolish to bet on a national participant to obtain a highly developed quantum system before a private organization. When they get this technology, they won’t just come for your Bitcoin. They will read your messages, and every email, IM or document you send with the old password; they can now be accessed with their new quantum master key.

Is there any solution?

The challenge for us to move forward is how to protect ourselves from its destructive potential.Me and my team are in xx network In the past few years, we have created our quantum secure blockchain as a way to solve this problem. Using our flagship metadata to smash DApp xx messenger to add another layer of privacy protection will be another way to prevent quantum armed malicious actors. Different innovators will have other solutions, but they are not coming fast enough.

There are reasons to believe that the coming quantum computing revolution will not destroy our opportunity to build a new decentralized world on the blockchain. On the one hand, the National Institute of Standards and Technology of the United States is already considering 69 potential new methods of “post-quantum cryptography”, and it is expected that there will be a draft standard by 2024, which can then be launched on the Internet.

In the post-quantum world, few encryption technologies are completely redundant. Key agreement protocols and digital signatures are the most vulnerable to attacks. Innovations such as lattice-based cryptography provide us with ready-made solutions that can be implemented in the next generation of blockchain technology, and more powerful technologies are known.

Although the kind of large quantum computer I portrayed in your nightmare has not yet appeared, arrogance and the unlimited free-will optimism of our community (usually an asset) may leave us exposed when it finally arrives. In the past few years, not only have cryptocurrencies been widely adopted, but people believe that decentralization can solve many of the problems found in our society today. We are winning this battle. It would be a great shame to lose this war because we did not take this collective threat to our security and privacy seriously.

If we do this, we can ensure the basic promise of blockchain technology and revitalize its appeal. This sounds exciting now.

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading action involves risks, and readers should research on their own when making a decision.

The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed here are only those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

David Chaum He is one of the earliest blockchain researchers and a world-renowned cryptographer and privacy advocate. Dr. Chaum, known as the “Godfather of Privacy”, first proposed a solution to protect metadata using a hybrid cascading network in 1979. In 1982, his thesis at the University of California, Berkeley became the first known blockchain protocol proposal. Dr. Chaum continued to develop eCash, the first digital currency, and made many contributions to a secure voting system in the 1990s. Today, Dr. Chaum is the founder of Elixxir, Praxxis, and the xx network, which combines decades of research and contributions in the field of cryptography and privacy to provide the most advanced blockchain solutions.