Crypto FUD: Quantum Computing Will Dwarf Blockchains’ Security

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Blockchain
Crypto FUD: Quantum Computing Will Dwarf Blockchains’ Security

Crypto FUD is Fear Uncertainty and Doubt propagated to fight cryptos and is usually unverified/ false facts about the technology. FUDs range in different industries away from cryptocurrencies so long as marketing is involved. This bad marketing strategy has discouraged people from trying new goods or popular ones for years. One of the significant crypto FUDs is that Quantum computing will dwarf the security in the crypto technology. 

Claim

There is a claim that cryptocurrency security will suffer in the era of quantum computing. The theory explains that these computers will be so powerful that they will break the algorithms behind several major crypto blockchains. It has been propagated by different people, including scholars from the University of Sussex, expressing their fears that BTC might be among the coins that will fall in the hands of quantum computing.

Webber and his team posted an article in the first week of February 2022 detailing that quantum computing will be a danger to cryptocurrencies. The report explained that the world’s fastest and most efficient supercomputer, the IBM Supercomputer, could break Bitcoin’s SHA-256 algorithm. 

However, he added that the time limit that the computer would take to complete the process of breaking down that algorithm is not clearly defined. Other scientists have expressed concerns over the SHA-256 cluster algorithms being susceptible to quantum computing. These algorithms are primarily used to encrypt the keys used to secure cryptos.

Rating

False

Facts Check

According to the research carried out by the team at Sussex, they concluded that only a supercomputer with a processing power of over 317 Quantum Bits could break down the SHA-256 algorithm in an hour or two. At the moment, the IBM supercomputer boasts around 127 qubits showing that it is still far behind the ‘possible’ processing power required to start causing damage to the Bitcoin algorithms.

For Bitcoin’s blockchain to be broken, the supercomputer would need to perform a 50+1 attack involving taking over the blocks’ mining process. Bitcoin mining is done using special hardware called the Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs), specifically made for the mining rigs. The circuits use a programming method/ hash function known as “puzzle friendliness,” where every input is expected to provide a good output, and if it doesn’t, then it is detected by the whole system, and the miner gets notified.

That means the operation of the ASICs cannot begin to be tampered with by any computer without all miners working on the same block being notified concurrently. Revisiting the super computer’s processing power vs. Bitcoin’s speed, Bitcoin boasts a hashrate of over 80,704,000 PetaFLOPS, while IBM’s supercomputer stood at slightly over 442 PetaFLOPS in June 2021.

Also, reflecting on the block production of Bitcoin, the hashrate is increasing as the mining difficulty increases owing to the coin approaching the release of the final 2 million coins. The coins will be mined till 2140, indicating that supercomputers might still not be developed enough to cause any serious threat to BTC then. 

The Truth About the Claim

Bitcoin has a higher speed than any available supercomputer to make the claim, and the facts simpler for anyone to understand. Therefore, it is still safe from being compromised by any of them. It is also approaching its final days of coin mining. That means its mining difficulty will spike, outpacing the improvements in supercomputers.

Therefore, it is guaranteed that the coin will stay safe from quantum computers till 2140 when the last coin might be mined. Also, there is no telling what the coin’s hashrate will be since it increases exponentially as the coins reduce. That means it may still be safe from quantum computers for over another century after 2140. 

Considering that the crypto space is filled with some of the best minds in the world, it is certain that they will come up with solutions to protect the blockchain technology years before quantum computing poses a real threat. Therefore, the claim that cryptos are not secure in the hands of quantum computing is a FUD that should be disregarded!

Samuel Mbaki Wanjiku

Samuel is an adventurous person who likes to explore topics in-depth and learn new things each day. His passion lies in gaining knowledge to help transform the world through his writing skills. He also believes in blockchain technology and its potential to usher in a cashless society. Currently, he is pursuing a Computer Science Bachelor’s degree driven by his fascination with emerging technologies. He has writing experience of about three years in different fields and two in blockchain technology.