Can advanced quantum computing pose a risk to Bitcoin security?

Rapid advances in quantum computing could pose a risk to certain types of Bitcoin transactions.

A wide range of initiatives in post-quantum cryptography works to mitigate unwanted scenarios

Some predict that rapid advances in quantum computing will have key implications in domains that use public-key cryptography, such as the Bitcoin ecosystem.

Bitcoin’s “asymmetric cryptography” is based on the principle of “one-way function”, which means that the public key can be easily reported from the corresponding private key, but not vice versa.

This is because classical algorithms require an astronomical amount of time to perform such calculations and are therefore impractical.

However, Peter Shore’s quantum algorithm in polynomial time, which is performed on a sufficiently advanced quantum computer, could perform such calculations and thus falsify digital signatures.

To better understand the level of risk introduced by advanced quantum computing, we limit ourselves to simple person-to-person payments.

They can be divided into two categories, each affected differently by quantum computing:

  • Pay to public key(p2pk): Here the public key can be obtained directly from the wallet address. A quantum computer could potentially be used to execute a private key, thus allowing a thief to spend money on an address.
  • Pay to public key hash(p2pkh- Pay to public key hash): Here the address consists of a public key hash and therefore cannot be obtained directly. It is detected only at the moment of starting the transaction.

So, until the funds are transferred from the p2pkh address, the public key is not known and the private key cannot be reported even using a quantum computer.

However, if funds are ever transferred from a p2pkh address, the public key is revealed.

Therefore, in order to limit the exposure of the public key, such addresses should never be used more than once.

Although avoiding the reuse of a p2pkh address can limit vulnerability, there may still be situations in which a quantum-capable adversary can successfully commit fraud.

The act of transferring coins even from a “secure” address reveals the public key.

From that moment until the transaction is dug up, the opponent has the opportunity to steal the funds.

What are the theoretical methods of attack?

Transaction hijacking: Here the attacker calculates the private key from the public key of the pending transaction and creates a conflicting transaction by spending the same coins, thus stealing the victim’s property.

The opponent offers a higher fee to encourage inclusion in the blockchain through the victim’s transaction. It must be noted that before the victim’s transaction is mined, the attacker must not only create, sign, and broadcast the conflicting transaction, but also first run Shor’s private key execution algorithm.

It is clear that time is crucial for such attacks. Thus, the level of performance of quantum computers dictates the probability of success of this threat vector.

Selfish mining: In this potential attack vector, an attacker could theoretically use Grover’s algorithm to gain an unfair advantage in mining.

This quantum computing routine helps search for unstructured data and can provide a square jump in the hash rate.

The ability to rapidly mine by sudden quantum acceleration could lead to price destabilization and control of the chain itself, resulting in possible attacks of 51%.

Combined attacks: By combining the above two vectors, an attacker could theoretically build a secret chain and selectively publish blocks to reorganize the public chain.

How to defend against these attacks?

Data collected through the mempool API can be used to run real-time machine learning algorithms to spot anomalies in the transaction fees offered and thus mark transaction abduction attempts.

Such algorithms can also help spot sharp jumps in block hash and raise warnings about possible “selfish mining” accordingly.

Dynamic AI models can calculate the risk of fraud during transactions at any time until confirmation.

These models can infer the potential earnings of a fraudster for each threat vector.

Insurance products can be designed to cover the risk of fraud during the transaction, whose prices can be calculated dynamically based on the probability of fraud in accordance with the models.

In addition, a “reputation score” can be calculated for each node in the blockchain. APIs that collect device details, IP address, etc. can be used to group activities (mining and/or transactions) into homogeneous clusters, and therefore have a high chance of originating from the same users.

Such patterns can also be used to directly detect quantum computers in a blockchain. A “reputation score” could be of particular importance in the case of combined attacks because opponents use a multi-vector approach to stealing funds.

Intelligent user interface design can help alert customers to the risk of address reuse, through the strategic placement of warning messages.

The principles of efficient incentive design can be used to formulate changes in consensus rules, such as applying margins to transaction fees for p2px and reusing p2px wallets.

This would lead users to move to safer behavior. Additionally, this would result in shortening the confirmation time of such transactions because the miners would select them first, thus narrowing the window of opportunity for the opponent.

The growth of quantum computers, with internal states consisting of many qubits, may raise questions about the basic cryptographic security of Bitcoin.

Even users who adhere to best security practices can still be affected in situations where a significant number of Bitcoins have been stolen from insecure addresses, causing increased price volatility.

A wide range of initiatives in post-quantum cryptography is underway to mitigate such scenarios.

It is crucial to note that the emergence of “quantum supremacy” does not necessarily mean the weakening of the bitcoin ecosystem.

Better quantum computing systems will eventually provide opportunities for a slow economic transition to better tools.

While the phase of asymmetric use of quantum computers can generate multiple threat vectors, fraud risk management principles along with user awareness can help design solutions for such a future.

How is the world stock market this morning? Oil, gold and Bitcoin stable

Traders expect data on US gross domestic product for the third quarter, which will be released on Thursday

Asian stock markets are on the rise at the beginning of the trading week, which is expected to publish quarterly reports on the operations of a large number of companies, although news from China about the introduction of property taxes in some regions had a negative impact on shares in Hong Kong and Chinese capital markets.

MSCI’s broadest Asia-Pacific stock index, excluding Japan’s, rose 0.26 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei fell 1.0 percent due to weakening profits of several domestic companies, Reuters reports.

Australian stocks rose 0.47 percent, supported by the value of mining firms, while South Korean stocks rose half a percent, with their rise limited by more subdued investment activity in Greater China.

The Chinese index of the most liquid stocks stagnated, while the sub-index of shares in the real estate sector fell by 3.0 percent.

The Hong Kong Stock Exchange Reference Index strengthened 0.18 percent, despite a 2.6 percent drop in shares of land-based real estate companies listed on the market.

The decline in the shares of real estate companies came after Saturday’s announcement from the Chinese parliament that a pilot real estate tax would be introduced in some regions.

As a reminder, the Chinese construction giant Evergrande last week barely escaped collapse by paying coupons on bonds, and according to today’s Reuters reports – some bondholders received the money.

At the same time, that company is not the only one that is on the financial edge. Namely, there are at least 4 more, which suggests that the Chinese real estate market is quite shaken.

On the currency exchanges, the dollar index, according to the latest available data, is 93,521 points, down 0.15 percent on a daily basis, and is moving towards its monthly low of 93,455 points recorded last week.

Traders are waiting for data on the gross domestic product of the USA for the third quarter, which will be published on Thursday.

Markets are still trying to position themselves for the expected reduction of the US stimulus program at the end of this year and a possible increase in interest rates by the end of 2022.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said on Friday that the US central bank should begin the process of cutting support by reducing asset purchases, but that it should not yet touch interest rates.

In commodity markets, oil prices are still on an upward trajectory, continuing the growth registered before the weekend, with American oil reaching a seven-year high because global supply is still insufficient in relation to growing demand around the world.

Brent North Sea crude jumped 0.88 percent to $86.28 a barrel, while U.S. WTI oil soared 1.11 percent to $84.69, the highest level in seven years.

The price of gold for spot delivery strengthened 0.3 percent to $1,797 an ounce. The value of this precious metal has been rising for the past two weeks due to growing concerns about inflation.

Bitcoin, which is also increasingly credited with protection against inflation, is trading at $61,901, up 1.6 percent on a daily basis, after last week’s turbulent trading when it reached a new high of $67,016.

The first Bitcoin trading on Wall Street: Satisfied investors, do not have to mine themselves

The digital coin recorded strong growth this month, in anticipation of the fund’s stock market debut.

The first trading of the stock exchange fund related to Bitcoin futures was done on Wall Street, which finally gave investors in cryptocurrencies what they were looking for, reports the American TV station CNN.

The ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF began trading at $40 a share on Tuesday, under the label “BITO,” and ended the day with a 5.0 percent raise.

This is the first fund of several expected ETFs that are preparing to debut with Bitcoin futures on the New York Stock Exchange.

VanEx, Invesco, Valkyrie, and Galaxy Digital are among several investment companies that have filed applications with the Securities and Exchange Commission to start trading Bitcoin ETFs, CNN states below.

Bitcoin has seen strong growth this month in anticipation of the fund’s stock debut and thanks to the fact that it is being bought by large institutional investors.

The value of this cryptocurrency has recovered, despite constant criticism from Jamie Damon, the general director of the investment bank “JPMorgan Chase”, who recently said that Bitcoin is “worthless”.

The price of the most famous coin exceeded 64,000 dollars on Tuesday afternoon, thus strengthening from the level recorded at the end of September of just under 44,000 dollars, which is an increase of over 40 percent.

Bitcoin is now just 1.0 percent away from its all-time high – just under $65,000 reached earlier this year.

Experts say that the ETF will bring Bitcoin closer to the masses and enable the average investor to participate in trading, without having to mine it himself.

Bitcoin and its new record – worth more than $65,000

Yesterday, the value of Bitcoin recorded the highest level and a new record was reached: the level of 65,000 dollars was exceeded.

Bitcoin briefly jumped above $65,000, a day after the financial instrument intended for that unit debuted on the New York Stock Exchange.

The Bitcoin Strategy ETF, a new stock exchange fund linked to Bitcoin, increased its value by almost five percent on the first day of trading, on Tuesday.

The fund should be a more affordable tool for major investors and could therefore further encourage cryptocurrency trading.

There is a possibility that the impact of the ETF launch could already be assessed, and we could see some kind of reaction – Buy rumors, sell the fact in the days ahead

said analyst Favad Razakzada.

Known for instability, Bitcoin could also easily break a new record, before potentially climbing to $70,000, Razakzada added.

The world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization rose more than 2 percent, to $65,607.92, surpassing the previous record of $64,899 it set in mid-April.

The value of Bitcoin reached a historically high level in mid-February when it was worth more than 51,000 dollars. This expansion of its value followed the announcement of large companies, such as Tesla and MasterCard, that they would support cryptocurrencies.

The optimistic statements of investors and billionaire Paul Tudor Jones raised the mood in the market and influenced the growth of the value of Bitcoin.

I think that cryptocurrencies will be excellent protection against inflation, it is quite clear that Bitcoin is currently leading the game with gold…

Jones said as a guest on CNBC.

How does cryptocurrency mining affect the pollution of the human environment?

Will the resumption of the use of discarded thermal power plants further endanger the level of pollution on the planet?

Bitcoin mining is becoming more expensive for the simple reason that fewer and fewer coins are left to be mined. Of the total predefined amount of 21 million coins, another 2.3 million coins remain to be mined.

Mining comes down to calculating cryptographic hash functions and comparing the calculated value with a database of undiscovered coins.

The smaller the remaining amount of coins, the longer the job of calculating and comparing the values of calculating hash functions.

Since the calculation process is longer, the amount of energy required for the operation of computer equipment is higher, ie the costs of electricity used by digital miners increase.

The obstacle to big Bitcoin mining is finding enough cheap energy to run huge, powerful computer plants that create and trade cryptocurrencies.

A Bitcoin mining plant in downtown New York has implemented a solution that has upset environmental movements.

Namely, the plant uses its own thermal power plant! Greenidge Generation has restarted a power plant that was once closed and conserved due to excessive environmental pollution.

Now the power plant on the shores of Lake Seneca produces about 44MW to run 15,300 computer servers as well as additional electricity it sends to the state electricity grid.

The megawatts used for Bitcoin mining and trading could power more than 35,000 homes! Proponents of cryptocurrencies call this venture a competitive way of mining cryptocurrencies without using the existing electricity grid.

Environmentalists express fear of revived fossil fuel power plants that emit greenhouse gases primarily for the purpose of making a private profit and not for the sake of achieving the public good.

Considering Greenidge a “test balloon”, environmental movements are asking the state to disable the operation of such thermal power plants in order to protect air quality and prevent similar projects.

Warnings of excessive pollution of the Earth’s atmosphere are coming from various directions, while the effects of global warming are becoming more noticeable.

According to published data, Greenidge mined 729 Bitcoin coins in the last three months, using 58 percent of the produced electricity for mining.

It was also clearly emphasized that the power plant regularly supplied the state network for electricity transmission, which was highlighted as a contribution to the energy system of the state.

Additional pollution of the human environment by reusing already discarded technologies is justified by encouraging the development of the region by introducing new cryptocurrency technology.

El Salvador, paying for airline tickets with Bitcoin

Low-cost airline Volaris announced that it will enable the payment of airline tickets with Bitcoin in El Salvador.

“Volaris” will thus become the first company in the world that enables passengers to pay for tickets for flights in digital currency, said the president of that country, Najib Bukele.

The company stated that it is working on enabling clients in El Salvador, which has adopted Bitcoin as a legal tender, to pay for services in digital currency at the airport.

Cryptocurrencies brought him to the Forbes list of the richest

Sam Bankman-Fried earned $22.5 billion before his 30th birthday thanks to the cryptocurrency exchange he started, although he himself does not believe much in the cryptocurrency market, writes Forbes, which recently published a list of the richest, which also includes Sam.

On a foggy evening in the late summer of 2021, Sam Bankman-Fried headed to a restaurant on the 24th floor of the five-star Equinox Hotel, which is part of the Hudson Yards complex in Manhattan.

The 29-year-old, who earned billions on cryptocurrencies, arrived from Hong Kong in part to organize his private celebration, but so as to go unnoticed.

The clothes he mostly wears, as Forbes writes – a black hooded sweatshirt, gray bermuda shorts, old “new balance” sneakers – could “hide” him on the street, but in the sea “cuffs” and “cocktail dresses”, he stands out even more than 205 centimeters tall Obi Topin, the center of the New York Knicks, who flies among the guests.

It didn’t take long before someone “hooked” him: “Can I suggest something to you?”, “What do you think about the latest fall in cryptocurrencies?”, “How about a photo for Instagram?” …

He didn’t have any Bitcoin in 2017

All of that is part of the job of the richest on Forbes’ list of rich people under 30.

FTX, Bankman-Fried’s cryptocurrency exchange that allows traders to buy and sell digital money such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, raised $900 million in July from funds (Coinbase ventures and Soft Bank) at an estimated value of $18 billion.

FTX manages about 10 percent of the face value of $ 3.4 trillion in derivatives (mostly futures and options), which are traded by crypto investors every month.

FTX earns an average of 0.02 percent on each of these transactions, has a profit of about $750 million in revenue with almost no risk, and has made $350 million in net profit in the last 12 months.

On its own, its trading company Alameda Research recorded a profit of $1 billion on timely transactions last year.

Recently, Bankman-Fried appeared on television to express his opinion on Bitcoin prices, regulations, and the future of digital assets writes Forbes.

Bitcoin consumes more electricity than Finland!

About 91 terawatt-hours of electricity are consumed to process Bitcoin transactions in one year, half a percent of the total consumption in the world, writes the New York Times.

That is more than electricity consumption in countries like Finland, where about 5.5 million people live.

If you want to pay something with Bitcoin, the first part of that transaction is simple and fast: you open an account on an exchange platform, like Coinbase.

It allows you to buy that cryptocurrency in dollars. After obtaining a digital wallet, Bitcoin needs to be transferred to the digital wallet of the person to whom something is being paid.

Then the transaction must be confirmed by the Bitcoin network, in order for the recipient to be convinced that what he is receiving is not fake. This explains the functioning of the giant online database where this data is stored.

In fact, much of the electricity is consumed there. Around the world, companies and individuals known as Bitcoin miners are competing to confirm this transaction and enter them in a public book in which all Bitcoin transactions are recorded.

They basically play guessing, using powerful computers that expend a lot of energy to try to beat others in that competition. Because if they are successful in that, they will be rewarded with valuable newly created Bitcoin. In fact, this competition for newly created Bitcoin is called “mining”.

For a long time, money was thought of as something that could be held in the hand. Traditional currencies are not completely free to use. Banks, credit card networks, and other intermediaries can control the use of their financial networks.

As a rule, this should prevent money laundering. For example, if you want to transfer a large amount of money to someone, the bank will report it to the state, even if the transfer is in progress. That is why a group of free thinkers figured out how to avoid such controls.

In 2008, an unknown person or several of them under the name Satoshi Nakamoto proposed the creation of an electronic payment system similar to cash, without intermediaries. This is how the currently most famous digital currency, managed by a decentralized network of users, was created.

Today, one Bitcoin is worth about $63,000, but its value often varies. However, the consumption of a large amount of electricity was the reason for the emergence of initiatives for the use of clean electricity in mining, as evidenced by a special certificate.

Bitcoin use has been shown to be accompanied by many illegal activities, such as money laundering. U.S. authorities arrested the alleged main operator of the cryptocurrency website Bitcoin Fog in April on three charges related to money laundering.

America Dominates Bitcoin Market: Bans in China drive all cryptocurrencies out of the country

In September 2019, miners in China accounted for 75% of the total Bitcoin coin mining activity, and after the measures introduced by the Chinese government, the USA now becomes dominant with more than a third of the total power of the Bitcoin network.

Following the introduction of initial restrictive measures against Bitcoin miners in China, it was rumored that large mining farms were looking for a new location, in order to continue mining in peace.

Texas and Kazakhstan were in the story, as the most serious options.

Liberal Texas for BTC mining

Texas is known for liberal regulations for working with cryptocurrencies, as well as low electricity prices, which are two very important items when it comes to choosing a location for a new crypto-farm.

On the other hand, Kazakhstan is the most logistically logical choice, because it is a direct neighbor of China, and it has a large number of thermal power plants that rely on coal, which means a low price of electricity.

According to the Cambridge Bitcoin Consumption Index(CBECI), Bitcoin miners in the U.S. make up 35.4% of the total global BTC hash rate distribution.

According to the same source, Kazakhstan is second with 18%, followed by Russia with 11%, as a new player, whose market share is growing.

In essence, these three nations have achieved the largest market share since China imposed serious restrictions.

Mass migrations of miners

In June, in the midst of restrictions, the fifth-largest crypto-community of miners(mining pool) BTC.com left the territory of China and moved its business to Kazakhstan.

At that time, BTC.com accounted for 10.4% of the total validation of Bitcoin blockchain blocks.

It is also interesting that the CBECI index shows that the percentage of Chinese miners has dropped to 0%, which is simply unbelievable.

Given such a large number of miners, we are pretty sure that there is a good percentage of those who still mine Bitcoin, but below the radar.

Of course, one should be careful, because China, and realistically, no other country in the world looks favorably on those who do not respect the law, so the Malaysian police have confiscated more than a $1.3 million cryptocurrency digging machine.

In addition to the large migration of crypto-miners from China to the United States, American miners such as Argo Blockchain, Riot Blockchain, Marathon, and many others took advantage of the situation and bought large quantities of mining rigs from Bitmain and MicroBT, which regularly supplied the Chinese market.

In 2021, the aforementioned Riot Blockchain tripled its capacity from 2,457 Bitcoin coins excavated in 10 months.

Ohio and Texas as main oases

In addition to Texas, another potential destination is the state of Ohio, also due to the popular price of electricity, as well as the fact that BIT Mining, a company specializing in Bitcoin mining, has entered into a joint project to build a huge plant for 85 megawatt Bitcoin companies, with Viking Data Centers, which are developing data centers focused on crypto miners and the necessary infrastructure.

In this way, not only will Ohio get a large Bitcoin mining facility, but it will also provide the necessary infrastructure for all those interested.

Excavated Almost 90% of Bitcoin – What fate will befall the crypto-economy?

Bitcoin, the world’s largest and most famous cryptocurrency, has a limited supply of 21 million coins, with almost 90 percent of them already mined.

Analysts are already considering what fate will befall the crypto-economy once new coins are not issued.

Unlike other forms of money, including decree money, which can be printed at the will of central banks, Bitcoin has a limited supply of 21 million coins.

This means that there is or will be a total of only 21 million Bitcoins.

By August 2021, approximately 18.7 million Bitcoins were available, and only 2.3 million remained for mining, according to Investopedia data.

Supply restraint makes the world’s oldest cryptocurrency a restricted commodity and controls inflation that could otherwise result from an unlimited supply of coins.

Also, such a situation leads to an estimate that the year 2,140 will be the time when the last Bitcoin will be mined.

If this is taken into account, the question arises whether the Bitcoin network will remain functional even after that time.

Analysts say that the economy of Bitcoin must change in order for the network to remain operational.

Many predict that the cryptocurrency ecosystem could go through a process of transformation, just like its identity.

It was originally introduced as a medium of exchange for daily transactions but later found greater popularity as a means of investment.

Analysts also say that those who mine Bitcoins could join cartels, similar to those that control other commodities, such as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), which controls the oil market.

Another possibility presented by analysts is that Bitcoin could become a reserve asset, which would reduce the number of transactions on the crypto network because retailers and small trading companies would be replaced by large institutional and trading players.

They would run a smaller number of larger transactions, which would extend the time to find the last Bitcoin.

Finally, the protocol that applies to cryptocurrency can be changed to extend production once it reaches the 21 million mark.

However, that would reduce the value of already found Bitcoins, which coin owners will probably not accept.

Currently, however, Bitcoin scarcity and rising prices are attracting speculative investors, whose actions have led to value changes that discourage serious investors from cryptocurrency.

The price of Bitcoin this year plummeted from its highest value of $60,000 in February to half that amount over the summer to rebound to $55,000 per coin this week.

Still, some countries like El Salvador and Cuba see potential in the currency and are taking steps to make it a legal tender.