Bitcoin Stays Safe in Face of IBM Doubling Its Quantum Computing Power
(Decrypt) IBM has doubled the power of its quantum computer and has successfully achieved a Quantum Volume of 32 using its 28-qubit quantum computer known as Raleigh.
Although IBM’s latest advancements can be considered significant progress, quantum computers can currently only be used for very specific tasks—e.g. they are far from the general-purpose classical computers we are accustomed to using. As such, concerns that they could be used to break the cryptography used to secure cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin
remain unfounded, at least for now.
According to a June 2017 paper by Martin Roetteler and several co-authors, such as a machine would need to command approximately 2,500 qubits of processing power to break the 256-bit encryption used by Bitcoin. The current most powerful quantum computer only features a 72-qubit processor, it will take several years for quantum computers to reach encryption-threatening levels.
There are currently efforts underway to ensure Bitcoin is resistant to potential quantum computing attacks.