Cryptocurrencies are free from government interference and operated by an open, peer-to-peer network. This independence has made Bitcoin very popular among digital currencies, and with its popularity came the constant rise of its value. At the beginning of 2017, one Bitcoin was worth $1,000. Fast forward 10 months later and its value had gone up to around $7,000.
The whole context around digital currencies is changing and constantly developing. Technology is getting better and more powerful every day, making more people and institutions involved in the financial world of cryptocurrencies. Alongside these changes, new issues arise.
One of the key aspects of Bitcoin that made people believe in it is its security. There are two important features that prevent Bitcoins from being stolen or copied. Both of them are based on cryptographic protocols that are almost impossible to crack, at least with the technology we have today. With the rise of quantum computers the security of Bitcoin, and everything else that uses similar methods of encryption, are coming into danger.
Some of the public-key schemes are resistant to the attack of quantum computers. Knowing this, it could be said that Bitcoin can change its security protocols in order to become safer against quantum computers.
Bitcoin doesn’t plan on revising security protocols at the moment. That makes sense as quantum computers are still not a threat in reality. The pressure to change will increase as the first powerful quantum computers come online in the next few years.
Quantum computers will be a big problem for cryptocurrencies for 10, maybe even 20 years. In that time, Bitcoin should make a significant change. It is possible to transfer to a better security system, but only time will tell if they’ll do it. Of course, there is a question of how secure everything would they be even with the new system, but that’s a different topic.