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Author Topic: Im fairly confident the NSA (US Gov) Can 51% Any Coin At Any Time  (Read 6764 times)
giszmo
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May 05, 2013, 04:07:57 PM
 #41

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I really hope Im wrong and Im sure Im not the first person to consider this. Also, a 1 billion dollar market cap currency isnt a threat to the dollar.

But what about 10 billion? 100billion? 1 trillion? 10 trillion? When do they decide to pull the trigger, if they could?
I don't think the market cap is the real threat. The whole idea of taking away control over both supply and traceability of transactions is annoying the New World Order pyramid.



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Why cant they just write Bitcoin hashing code for their existing code breaking machines, fork the chain, invalidate all our coins, and then go back to hacking your Facebook to learn grandma's secret pie crust recipe?
Written code is inefficient. CPU mining shows this. First the code is compiled from C++ to ASM by compiler on Satoshi's notebook. Then the ASM x86 instructions are translated into RISC instructions by CPU internal hardware to finally execute. ASIC hardware have the logic needed for Bitcoin hashing designed into silicon wafers and transistors bypassing ALL other steps needed. This is why ASIC is the fastest solution possible and also this makes the ASIC unsuitable to any other purpose than Bitcoin mining and home heating.

If the 51% attack starts today all they can do is invalidate transactions starting from today. Unless they redo ALL work from last checkpoint hardcoded into Bitcoin-Qt that is more challenging than simple 51% denial of service and doublespend attack.
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bullshit

bitcoin is the most powerful computing effort undertaken by humans to date...by an order of magnitude and then some
This.
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I can assure you that the NSA has bigger things to worry about than bitcoin.
I think reading private e-mails of all population to figure out who don't like USA government and new world order is more important task. Seriously. More than 50% of world hates USA. Now that's a 51% attack against USA!
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The american intelligence agencies have no incentive to bring down bitcoin. Unless the NSA receives an executive order to kill bitcoin, they simply won't do it.
Even if they receive such orders all they can do is attack public persons involved in Bitcoin, take down exchanges and services accepting them and attack individual nodes. This will bring chaos and destruction but the Bitcoin will survive. Think about going really hidden and anonymous then.
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I totally agree with the OP. If some school kids can buy chips in China for some 20M USD, then the CIA can do so, too.
Think about BFL and Inaba scaming CIA like everyone else. Cheesy They can order the ASIC chips from foundries but it might be hard for them to keep this secret. The designs might get leaked, the chips might be produced more than ordered and sold on black market. There are not many foundries in world who operate on recent 28nm or even 45nm process. They need such process unless they are ready to use outdated and inefficient 180nm.
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My conclusion is that we already have the blessing of these circles. One version would be that Satoshi is the CIA.
We already figured out that Satoshi is time traveler from future and not Sirius. He definitely could not be CIA. Cheesy
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After all the $$ will fail, so what else would you do? Gold standard?
Invalidate the current US Dollar, start printing red colored dollars called New US Dollar. Exchange all current US dollars for new US dollars with exchange rate 200 to 1. Problem solved. Learn what the government fucks did to money in Latvia after fall of USSR.
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I wouldn't be surprised at all if they could do it, nor if they have a contingency plan for taking down the entire Internet at least briefly.  If not the NSA, then some other TLA.
Sure they can switch off large part of internet. Including their own military systems depending on Internet. Existing network in other parts in world will continue to function. Bitcoin will continue to function there too.
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The Government can't do anything more about crypto-currency than they could about Pirate Bay
They actually could do less. Pirate Bay have centralized servers. Raid them, take them offline, harass the owners. Bitcoin is decentralized to such degree that every node and pool is independent Pirate Bay.
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They're the NSA.  If they wanted, they could spend <1% of their budget, have some nice 28nm ASICs fabbed and mass produced and take like 80% of the network.

Good news though.  They don't give a shit.
In the moment they start to plan this move, the spy agencies in Russia, China, Iran will be informed. They might not care about well-being of Bitcoin but they might sabotage the NSA-CIA work as a routine action of spite and lulz. Contaminating the fab facility by subtle sabotage is not hard for them. Definitely it does not cost 30 billion or require Otto Skorenzy parachuting over the fab.
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But they can not do it secretively, they will have to join the network and thus revealing their identity to have an impact, and this directly defeat the purpose of  existence of "No Such Agency".
Even 13 year old boy can do that without revealing himself. They connect to Bitcoin network using Tor and then publish the longer malicious chain. I just solved the problem for NSA. They are welcome to send the hacked bitcoins to address in my signature as I probably spared them of few million taxpayers USD needed to solve this problem!
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This was also the genius of the early internet: The same technology that's to make dissident political communications hard to censor is also used for commerce and chatting to friends. You can't shut down the one without shutting down the other. This makes the network very strong, because people may not be bothered about some nutjob's right to express his political views, but mess with their ability to share pictures of their cats and THE STREETS WILL RUN RED WITH THE BLOOD OF REVOLUTION.
This largely depends on how many people are willing to go on streets and start shooting at police and military troops because they cannot share lolcats in internet. And how victoriously they could do it without being defeated. For this to happen the situation in other aspects of society must be as bad too. This is why all regulations, censorship and taking away civil liberties are done slowly and in small increments.
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What do you think they are doing with all that power?  Breaking codes, matching hashes, the same kind of thing Bitcoin miners do.
Mass surveillance of both domestic and foreign population. Datamining and storing every communication for eternity.
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Also, they could hack into any exchange they want...
Bullshit. Everyone who knows about computer security will agree that there is no such thing as guaranteed hackability. This is why Pirate Bay was physically raided and taken away and not hacked from NSA or FBI every time it resurfaced.
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Of course countries ran by authoritize regimes (China, Iran, Syria, North Korea, etc etc) would probably try to take a hardline approach on something like bitcoin if it undermined their power or influence at all.
I think these countries might embrace Bitcoin instead as a weapon to destabilize USA monetary grip over world.

Also I'm slightly annoyed about the way mom quotes. Almost as bad as German 8 o'clock news. Source: Internet

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May 15, 2013, 10:41:49 PM
 #42

Even if the government decided to take such action, even if they effectively "killed" Bitcoin, there are about 10 others to choose from I think. Bitcoin is a hydra, cut off one head two more appear  Grin

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May 15, 2013, 11:00:57 PM
 #43

fortunately this isnt really a threat. the computers they have now are not designed to hash sha256 and if they did invest the resources necessary to develop their own asics we would simply switch to a new POW scheme each time Grin

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May 15, 2013, 11:54:34 PM
 #44

LINK TO WIRED ARTICLE: http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/all/

Im dont have a degree in computer science and couldnt do any calculations even if we had real numbers about just how powerful the NSA's combined hashing power is, but given the scale and rate of development of massively parallel computing power the NSA has developed for code breaking, and given that they employ thousands of the smartest and best programmers and cryptographers in the world, and given that they have an unlimited budget, its seems obvious to me that the US Gov could have the NSA 51% attack any coin at any time. They have machines which make your Avalon look like a Casio watch from 1980.

Sorry for the downer, and hey at least Bitcoins have bounced back a little today. But to me this seems to be by far the biggest threat to Bitcoin and all the altcoins. Sorry if this has been posted or discussed here before, I did a quick search but didnt find much.

"the agency has not finished building at Oak Ridge, nor is it satisfied with breaking the petaflop barrier. Its next goal is to reach exaflop speed, one quintillion (1018) operations a second, and eventually zettaflop (1021) and yottaflop."


You've been watching too many movies haven't you? This is a plot from the movie Sneakers.
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May 15, 2013, 11:57:04 PM
 #45

You will likely be able to go into Best Buy in the next few years and buy an ASIC miner, cheap.

First seastead company actually selling seasteads: Ocean Builders https://ocean.builders  Of course we accept bitcoin.
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May 16, 2013, 12:35:49 AM
 #46

I'm fairly confident you don't know what you're talking about.

FLoating point OPerations have nothing to do with bitcoin mining.

The printing press heralded the end of the Dark Ages and made the Enlightenment possible, but it took another three centuries before any country managed to put freedom of the press beyond the reach of legislators.  So it may take a while before cryptocurrencies are free of the AML-NSA-KYC surveillance plague.
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May 16, 2013, 12:58:54 AM
 #47

So people here are like "Even if this three-letter agency were to spend billions of dollars of taxpayers' money just to disrupt a civilian network run partly by American citizens, I would do nothing but get others to harden my network", really?

If our (US) government opts to allocate necessary resources to such an endeavor, my coins will be the least of my worries. My principal worry will be holding my place in line for government handouts that will be necessary to support those of us that do not hold the wealth needed to support this effort and still feed ourselves. The time may come. In the meantime the US government will likely resort to less resource intensive intrusions on both privacy and economy.

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May 16, 2013, 01:26:41 AM
 #48

LINK TO WIRED ARTICLE: http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/all/

Im dont have a degree in computer science and couldnt do any calculations even if we had real numbers about just how powerful the NSA's combined hashing power is, but given the scale and rate of development of massively parallel computing power the NSA has developed for code breaking, and given that they employ thousands of the smartest and best programmers and cryptographers in the world, and given that they have an unlimited budget, its seems obvious to me that the US Gov could have the NSA 51% attack any coin at any time. They have machines which make your Avalon look like a Casio watch from 1980.

Sorry for the downer, and hey at least Bitcoins have bounced back a little today. But to me this seems to be by far the biggest threat to Bitcoin and all the altcoins. Sorry if this has been posted or discussed here before, I did a quick search but didnt find much.

"the agency has not finished building at Oak Ridge, nor is it satisfied with breaking the petaflop barrier. Its next goal is to reach exaflop speed, one quintillion (1018) operations a second, and eventually zettaflop (1021) and yottaflop."

I'm going to take a wild guess here and assert that the NSA doesn't give a rat's ass about BitCoin, and most likely, never will.
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May 16, 2013, 03:10:30 AM
 #49

OP, you're that confident because you don't know enough about bitcoin or computers.

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