Blockchain technology is known for its advanced security features that make it essentially hacker-proof.
Cryptography, the technology that secures blockchains, makes it impossible for anyone using a computer to alter, edit or tamper with data stored on the blockchain.
So advanced is cryptography that even super computers do not seem to crack its security module.
But there’s a new threat and it comes in the form of quantum computers.
These are extra powerful computers whose computing power is so huge that it can crack the private keys of blockchain wallets in milliseconds.
Although the quantum computer only exists in theory, some companies including Google, are already experimenting with prototypes.
Scientists believe that there will be quantum computers in operation within the next decade or so.
With the threat of quantum computers, it’s not hard to see why some companies are already designing quantum proof cryptocurrencies.
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A quantum proof cryptocurrency is designed and built to encrypt data using a technology that’s resistant to quantum computers.
Such cryptocurrencies seek to replace the digital algorithms they use to secure private keys, with lattice based signatures or other technology that cannot be altered using quantum computers.
According to researchers, quantum computers could be powerful enough to link the private and public keys of blockchains, throwing their security models into disarray and crashing the entire industry as we know it.
As it stands, most cryptocurrencies that exist today are not quantum-proof, meaning they could be wiped out when quantum computers come into the picture.
These include legacy cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. However, some cryptocurrencies seem to be thinking into the quantum future.
They are launching quantum-proof cryptocurrency projects that are prepared to withstand and neutralize the imminent threat of quantum computers.
Examples include Quantum Resistant Ledger (QRL), and IOTA and Tangle.
If there’s one thing that could crash the entire cryptocurrency industry, it’s quantum computing.
It brings to the world more computing power than ever imagined.
The fact that quantum computers could handle billions of calculations per second makes them a real threat to the cryptocurency industry, which relies on hacker-proof cryptography technology.
In theory, researchers say that quantum computers could figure out algorithms 100 million times faster than a traditional computer.
The idea of quantum computing is not entirely new.
It was designed by Richard Feynman, a noble prize-winning physicist, in 1982.
It gained traction in 1994 when Peter Shor devised a quantum computer algorithm.
Although a quantum computer only exists in theory, some companies have in recent years accelerated their research on quantum computers.
These include Google, which shares a 1,000 qubit quantum computer with NASA for research purposes.
Quantum ledger to the rescue
Given the threat of quantum computers, innovators are moving to create quantum proof parts.
One of these is Dr. Peter Waterland, the innovator behind Quantum Resistant Ledger (QRL) project.
The project runs on a public blockchain that uses a secure signature mechanism called Extended Merkle Signature Scheme (XMSS).
This gives a single-use private key to protect wallets.
Although QRL is a proof of stake cryptocurrency, it doesn’t rely on conventional signatures.
It uses hash–chain and hash based random numbers to secure its blockchain, making it quantum proof.
QRL has an ERC20 standard token and is traded on major exchanges like Bittrex, Liqui and Tidex.
When quantum computers are finally introduced into the industry, QRL will remain intact and its value will likely soar at a time when other cryptocurrencies are likely to crash.
Technically, QRL was built on the Ethereum blockchain although it migrated to its own mainnet in June 2018.
The token has a circulating supply of 52 million QRL against a total of 65 million tokens.
Other than just making their blockchain quantum resistant, the QRL team is also building what they call “Ephemeral Messaging Layer” which will allow for quantum proof services like file transfer, VOIP, messaging and more.
QRL is among the few cryptocurrencies that are looking into the possibility of near-term quantum computing.
Why should you choose QRL over other cryptocurrencies?
The cryptocurrency is hedging itself, meaning that it has factored in as many threats that could negatively affect its future.
This makes it an ideal cryptocoin to invest in for the long-term.
If you have any worries about the future of cryptocurrencies or how quantum computers could impact cryptocurrencies, QRL is a project worth investigating.
A look into the future
According to scientists, anything that could crack the cryptography technology is a massive threat to the existence of cryptocurrencies.
Cryptography is the holy grail of securing blockchains.
They see quantum computers to be powerful enough to crack private keys of blockchain wallets, and this could essentially wipe out a huge percentage of cryptocurrencies.
How is QRL post quantum secure?
The answer lies in their unique hashing algorithm.
Unlike other cryptocurrencies, QRL uses the Extended Merkle Signature Scheme that’s bolstered with One Time Signature Scheme to protect it from Shor’s quantum algorithm.
When the inevitable happens, the QRL cryptocurrency will have an advantage over conventional coins as its technology enables it to withstand any threat from quantum computers.
How will the QRL migration process look?
A few months after the QRL team launched their mainnet, they are allowing investors to convert their ERC20 standard tokens for the new QRL Quanta coins.
Migrating from an Ethereum blockchain to the Quanta blockchain is straightforward. All you need to do is to create a QRL wallet and address to start the migration process.
You can easily do this on QRL Webwallet, or from your node.
Next, head over to the Token Migration Web page and paste your newly created QRL address.
The next step is to send your QRL ERC20 tokens to an Ethereum Burn Address.
The moment you send QRL ERC20 token to the Ethereum Burn Address, you receive QRL Quanta coins in your wallet, deposited in the ratio of 1:1.