Quantum-Resistant Cryptography In Blockchain: The Next Frontier

Technology enthusiasts are confident that quantum computing will revolutionize every single field: Its predicted potential in almost every field, including drug design and development, cybersecurity and cryptography, computational chemistry, and weather forecasting, has attracted VC investments of more than USD 1 billion.

Quantum computing enables users to quickly finish tasks that would take a traditional computing system much longer to complete. However, cryptocurrency investors are anxious about the damage quantum computing can cause to cryptocurrency, despite the developments it can bring to other fields.

Quantum computing reigns supreme

Cryptography enables secure communications using various digital signatures like symmetric cryptography, asymmetric cryptography, and cryptographic hash to encrypt plain text to code to be decoded only by the intended recipients. For example, Bitcoin uses a complex digital signature algorithm, Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (ECDSA), for encryption, which is difficult to crack even by the fastest computers.

Quantum computing has challenged crypto currencies with its capability of cracking the public key cryptography to break the whole system: It makes cryptographic algorithms that were once considered immune to threats vulnerable. According to the quantum computing market scope report, quantum computing is forecasted to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 30.2% between 2021 and 2026. This creates the need for currencies that cannot be affected by either classical or post-quantum cryptographic attacks.

Bracing up: Future-proofing blockchain

Quantum currencies are an alternative to crypto currencies, which are a secure value transfer system. This could be the dawn of quantum financial systems replacing the central banking system.

Quantum cryptography can be built using cryptographic signatures that are resistant to quantum computers. Quantum-resistant digital signatures include hash-based, code-based, lattice-based, and multivariate quadratic equations along with secret key cryptographies.

Quantum Resistant Ledger (QRL) is the first industrial implementation of quantum-proof cryptographic blockchain technology using PQCrypto approved by NIST. It uses a hash-based digital signature, eXtended Merkle Tree Signature Scheme (XMSS), instead of ECDSA, which is used in classical crypto currencies. It allows the users to interact with public and private post-quantum blockchains built securely on its core.

QRL has two components:

  • A one-time signature scheme (OTS).
  • A method for creating a single, long-term public key from a large set of OTS public keys.

What brings prominence to QRL?

The QRL is the first industrial-grade platform that secures stored digital assets against cyberattacks. It also allows interaction with post-quantum blockchains for transactions. XMSS, a post-quantum secure digital signature scheme used by QRL, makes QRL safe for both the present and the quantum computers era.

The suite of products on the platform caters to all category of users such as developers, users, and data miners. It’s available on Mac, Windows, and Linux and offers both iOS and Android applications. It also offers web browsers that can be downloadable from its website. The rich API, an open development infrastructure, and open algorithms provide the environment for the developers to easily build quantum-safe blockchain applications that can resist quantum attacks.

Will QRL usurp crypto blockchain technology?

QRLs are seen as the most viable option available so far in the market to fight the superior performance of quantum computing in blockchain technology. Security audit reports on QRL from third-party companies Red4Sec and X41 D-Sec gives QRL a path to improve its product infrastructure and increase the effectiveness of the platform’s security against future threats. We can be certain that when quantum computers arrive, crypto enthusiasts will have alternate technology to rely on.