• Bitcoin shrugs off last week’s malaise to trade at a high on Sunday of USD 7,348 so far
  • Bitcoin is set to outperform gold and stocks by many folds in 2019 in terms of price performance
  • Scientists claim to be developing a new crack-proof encryption chip that isn’t vulnerable to quantum computing

Bitcoin seems to have shrugged off the end of last week’s jitters when it momentarily crashed through the USD 7,000 support levels, with Saturday trading strong, and Sunday trading so far strengthening claims of a reversal en route with a daily high of USD 7,348 (CoinDesk).

Although the world’s most used digital asset is now recording almost 50% value loss from its 2019 high of USD 13,880, it has still managed to put itself strongly ahead of the year’s most profitable assets. Trading at well over 100% of its 2019 low of about USD 3,400, Bitcoin can still afford to lose a few hundred dollars of its current price by 31 December 2019 to still proudly say it will almost double its year-on-year value.

US stocks have enjoyed a huge year under President Donald Trump, achieving almost 30% for the S&P 500 index, a yearly gain not since since the Clinton era in 1997. Gold has also seen a resurgence this year and the classic precious metal now trades at about USD 1,480 to record a year-on-year growth of 15%. But despite the huge bullish sentiment on these traditional assets, they pale in comparison with Bitcoin’s performance, and look to remain in runners’ up positions by the first day of 2020.

And while both stocks and gold have been getting positive interest, it has been due mainly to monetary easing measures done by the US central bank. The Federal Reserve is still hot on the move too, expanding its balance sheet by over USD 300 billion in the last three months.

Bitcoin, surprisingly, has been facing all sorts of selling pressure, from fundamental operations like mining costs to external issues like regulatory crackdowns, negative moves from governments and the occasional exchange hacks that get unnecessary due.

Meanwhile, a new development is surfacing that promises to address one old news item the bears like: Bitcoin’s supposed vulnerability to quantum computing.

The solution, according to a scientific team’s paper in the Nature journal, is a silicon chip that they developed to enable encryption that simply can’t be broken. They say a prototype already exists, using a normal silicon-based semiconductors in a complex system of “chaotic wavepackets“.

Jointly developed by researchers from UK’s School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of St Andrews, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia, and the Center for Unconventional Processes of Sciences in California, the chip believes that it may make Bitcoin’s cryptographic encryption standards obsolete, since they believe it is vulnerable to quantum computing.

Some academics think that quantum computing essentially means Bitcoin’s encryption can simply be brute forced at unimaginable speed. Most believe the threat to be theoretical, while others believe pragmatism and progress in technology will always ensure Bitcoin is up to speed with the latest developments.

BitcoinNews.com has covered this topic several times and has outlined several times why quantum computing isn’t the threat to Bitcoin it’s made out to be.

But others, like Xinxin Fan, head of cryptography at privacy and IoT-focused blockchain platform IoTeX, believes the threat should be addressed soon.

And the scientists behind this break-proof encryption claim that the idea of a one-time pad (OTP) inspired the new chip, and that they have tried to make it a practical implementation that puts a safe way to exchange keys. They say they have a mission:

“[to] develop a physical realization of the OTP that is compatible with the existing optical communication infrastructure and offers unconditional security in the key distribution.”

A potential replacement for SHA 256 one day?

In any case, next week, we see if we can end the year on a high and see if analysts are right about Bitcoin ending the year a little higher than it has been this week.

 

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