Physicists at the Russian Quantum Center have created and tested the world’s first ‘quantum blockchain,’ an unhackable system for distributed data storage.
As reported by the Russian state-owned information agency TASS, the RQC’s quantum blockchain is secured with quantum cryptography solutions. Guidelines for its deployment have been published at arXiv.org.
According to Alexei Fyodorov of the RQC, unlimited computational capacity of quantum computers theoretically may empower attackers to counterfeit electronic signatures in blockchain transactions, and thus alter it or interfere with other users’ interaction.
In order to tackle said problem, Mr. Fyodorov’s group has developed their own take on blockchain that uses quantum cryptography and quantum data transfer systems to protect such databases from attacks.
Hack-proof quantum communication channels transfer data on current transactions. Once all blockchain members receive data on forthcoming money / data transfers they check reliability and trustworthiness of involved parties and collectively decide whether to record such transaction by comparing the received values pairwise.
Still, the approach may efficiently work with particular dishonest transactions containing contradictory data to different network members, yet it cannot completely exclude takeover and counterfeiting of the entire database. On the other hand, the physicists say, hacking the entire blockchain is a difficult and nearly impossible task as it would require hackers to encroach upon the majority of network members.
The scientists say the quantum-safe blockchain has been tested on the three-node quantum network recently created between GazpromBank offices in Moscow. All the attempts of a ‘hacker’ played by a network member to record false data onto the blockchain have failed, thus confirming the solution’s efficiency.
“Experts believe that blockchain-related services will be worth $62 trillion by mid-2020’s. Our system’s effect may expand the market by the score. It’s also important that the technology has been created and tested in Russia in real-life conditions,” the researchers said.
Quantum cryptography methods have also been applied by BitCAD, a cryptographic smart platform, to enhance data encryption techniques.