What is crypto’s response to quantum computing?

Spurred on by news I saw on Reddit of new advances in quantum technology, I’m curious to know what the mood is in the crypto community at large.

Yes, quantum computing is a danger to ALL security protocols, not just Blockchain tech. But that’s not a complete answer considering crypto’s promise to become the new, cutting edge double-spend solution set to take over the world.

What will happen if and when computers crack the ledgers? What can developers do to prepare for and/or program against it?

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17 thoughts on “What is crypto’s response to quantum computing?”

  1. I actually wrote a post about this, it’s a really interesting subject to me. I do think we’re a ways off from this ever happening. The blockchain community is working on ways to prevent quantum computing disasters by creating quantum-resilient ledgers. There’s also new communication protocols being worked on like QSL (quantum secure layer) and post-quantum cryptography (PQC). Protective algorithms are also being created to protect keys using complex mathematics such as multi-hundred-dimensional lattice infrastructures.

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  2. Pretty sure we just need to update the signature schemes. The move to something quantum resistant is already being worked on/soon to be decided by NIST.

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  3. It is true that it diminishes the security of currently cryptographic algorithms used in today’s practices. However, cryptography is just a discipline of mathematics and cryptographers already know algorithms that can even safeguard from quantum calculations attempting to crack them. If/when quantum computing becomes a reality, we will see all of the tech industry make a massive shift/update to their security features to use updated algorithms. It would probably be as simple as swapping in a new cryptography library or using a different function. Knowing the media, there will probably be much more doomsday proselytizing than needs to be.

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  4. There will be solutions. With todays knowledge quantum computing is only a threat for elliptic curve functions, hash functions are theorized not to be defeated. So even Bitcoin today is quantum resistant for all addresses that never have spend, because the public keys are not publicly known, just their SHA256 hashes (the addresses).

    Yes, this is not a sufficient quantum hardness as required for something as Bitcoin for everyday usage, but it shows that Quantum Computers will also not be the security apocalypse some believe it to be.

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  5. I’m just gonna talk about btc:
    It can be upgraded to resist against quantum computers if needed.

    If someone got quantum computer and wanted to make money with it they would probably try to get it from somewhere else than btc, but if they decided to get it from btc they would just kill btc = no money for them either, instead if they started mining btc with that computer they could get lots of money and at same time just make btc stronger.

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  6. I think you meant to ask:

    **What is humanities response to quantum computing?**

    Crypto will be the least of our worries.

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  7. >yes quantum computing is a danger to ALL security protocols

    As you said here there is none. In general quantum resistant algorithms would have to be created for everything, crypto included. Assuming the worlds doesn’t ignite when it’s broken, chains would need to update to whatever resistant algorithm is created

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  8. One answer I’ve seen is that other security measures will get broken before crypto so there will be time to address the vulnerability.

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  9. The hope is that, ahead of quantum apocalypse, developers will create means to resist or sidestep it. It’s the records in the blockchains that are “etched in stone”, not the base protocols, all of which are capable of upgrades.

    Considering the glacial pace at which Ethereum moves, though, I’d be clenching my cheeks pretty hard if I aped in harder than I have.

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  10. The entire current banking/monetary system is essentially digital now too- so any of the currently implemented security there is going to be insufficient in the face of malicious quantum computing power use.

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