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Diddy Dong
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April 15, 2019, 08:34:25 PM
 #1

I've been reading up about bitcoin more and people are saying that the early addresses ( Satoshi coins mainly) are more vulnerable to being cracked due to the advances in computing power.

I'm a technical noob so can someone explain the basics of this.

How long until these early addresses are under a real threat of being cracked?
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April 15, 2019, 08:36:50 PM
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Old addresses have ECC public key and new addresses are known with a SHA256 hash of a public key:

Before: Private key -> Public key

Current: Private key -> Public key -> Hash

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April 15, 2019, 10:44:08 PM
 #3

I've been reading up about bitcoin more and people are saying that the early addresses ( Satoshi coins mainly) are more vulnerable to being cracked due to the advances in computing power.
I'm a technical noob so can someone explain the basics of this.
How long until these early addresses are under a real threat of being cracked?
The argument is that if the public key is known (in the block chain), there is an attack vector : it mights be true but it is _*very*_ unlikely (even more if address hasn't been re-used). Hence it's not false, but it's not honest to use this argument to spread FUD (which causes your second question).
How long until these early addresses are under a real threat of being cracked?
Likely long

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April 15, 2019, 10:56:28 PM
 #4

Old addresses have ECC public key and new addresses are known with a SHA256 hash of a public key:

Before: Private key -> Public key

Current: Private key -> Public key -> Hash
There is nothing like old adresses and new addresses and an address is not the sha256 of the public key.

Actually there are 3 types of addresses: P2PKH, P2SH and bech32 and this has nothing to do with how secure they are.

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April 15, 2019, 11:44:55 PM
 #5

Satoshi's coins will be cracked with quantum computing, that is a fact.  Anyone else saying otherwise is a liar or delusional.
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April 16, 2019, 03:32:13 AM
 #6

Satoshi's coins will be cracked with quantum computing, that is a fact.  Anyone else saying otherwise is a liar or delusional.
Heh - "quantum computing" does everything Smiley

Do it and prove yourself right.

Reality: no it wont and you will never do it.

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April 16, 2019, 03:44:40 AM
Merited by Welsh (10), NeuroticFish (1)
 #7

I've been reading up about bitcoin more and people are saying that the early addresses ( Satoshi coins mainly) are more vulnerable to being cracked due to the advances in computing power.

the short answer is no there is no difference and they are just as safe. what you are reading online is a drama that some people are starting again about Satoshi's supposedly large stack of coins. and that is just it, a drama and  you should ignore it. in very simple terms saying Satohi's coins are more vulnerable to "cracking" is like saying a password with 50 random upper+lower+symbol is easier to crack than same password with 55 random same chars!


the technical answer is this:
first of all there are no addresses. in each transaction we create a new output script which is more like a locking mechanism that only the one with the private key can "unlock" or spend. in early years we were using public keys directly but nowadays we are using the hash of the public key.

now what is the problem? nothing really but if the cryptography used by bitcoin for producing public keys (ie. elliptic curve and ECDSA [the digital signature algorithm]) has some sort of weakness that some day someone finds it and can reverse that, they can find the private key from public key (the discrete logarithm problem) and since these outputs have the public key already revealed you can break those first. but the new outputs that don't reveal the public keys (instead they only reveal the hash of it and hash is irreversible) then they have a slightly increase security.
but here is the thing, those early outputs are NOT the only thing that will be threatened by this. there are thousands of others that are doing address reuse including exchanges with huge amounts of funds. so if anybody tries to break things they would break those addresses because to break one it takes time and when you break that one you get thousands of bitcoin instead of 50. not to mention that if ECDSA was broken bitcoin would be in a much bigger problem than just Satoshi's coins!

is it a serious issue? not really. the curve size we use in bitcoin is 256 bits and that is providing us with a high enough level of security that we don't have to worry about it for many years to come. and if it starts becoming a threat bitcoin will change its DSA to prevent that long before it becomes a thing.

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April 16, 2019, 04:28:01 AM
Merited by Welsh (6)
 #8

I would like to add that OP must be misinterpreting P2PKH as "early addresses" and P2SH as "new addresses".
And like they said, there's no difference regarding the security.

@Diddy Dong You've mentioned about "advancement in computing power" but with the current rate of advancement, I'd say that ECDSA will be safe for the next 100 Years (just a rough guess). But we're currently at the stage when processors require new innovations than upgrades to the structure that they did in the last few years (Moore's Law).

The only vulnerability of ECDSA reported in the news and papers are implementation errors, not the Algorithm itself.
Quantum computing (aka. Magical Computer™) is out of the question, they can hardly explain quantum physics (only via our Broken Math Units) yet they claim that it's working by validating the "quantum processes" via regular computers  Undecided

the curve size we use in bitcoin is 256 bits and that is providing us with a high enough level of security that we don't have to worry about it for many years to come. and if it starts becoming a threat bitcoin will change its DSA to prevent that long before it becomes a thing.
Isn't shifting to DSA will render old private keys unable to spend the funds from previous formats, or it's possible to make it compatible?
And if ECDSA vulnerability became a threat at that time and Bitcoin still provides backward-compatibility, then the "old addresses" will likely be cracked since those prv keys became vulnerable.
[Not pushing the FUD, just curious]

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PrimeNumber7
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April 16, 2019, 05:31:40 AM
 #9

Satoshi's coins will be cracked with quantum computing, that is a fact.  Anyone else saying otherwise is a liar or delusional.
Heh - "quantum computing" does everything Smiley

I cannot speak for him, but I believe he phrased his comment poorly.

Advancements in QC technology will most likely lead to being able to break ECDSA, that will lead to QC being able to "crack" private keys of addresses that have been used, and some of the "older" addresses described in the OP even if they have not been used.

This technology is still a long ways away.

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April 16, 2019, 09:00:32 AM
Merited by Welsh (3), ETFbitcoin (1), nc50lc (1)
 #10

I would like to add that OP must be misinterpreting P2PKH as "early addresses" and P2SH as "new addresses".
early "outputs" were P2PK (..pubkey) instead of P2PKH (...pubkey hash).

Quote
the curve size we use in bitcoin is 256 bits and that is providing us with a high enough level of security that we don't have to worry about it for many years to come. and if it starts becoming a threat bitcoin will change its DSA to prevent that long before it becomes a thing.
Isn't shifting to DSA will render old private keys unable to spend the funds from previous formats, or it's possible to make it compatible?
And if ECDSA vulnerability became a threat at that time and Bitcoin still provides backward-compatibility, then the "old addresses" will likely be cracked since those prv keys became vulnerable.
[Not pushing the FUD, just curious]
it does but these things don't happen overnight. the first step is first find a more efficient way to solve discrete logarithm problem within our lifetime (that doesn't take billions of years to compute) and then a huge amount of computing power must be dedicated to solve it. i believe there will be enough time to switch and for everyone to have enough time to move their funds because we are talking about years here.

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April 16, 2019, 09:27:58 AM
 #11

Like what the comments said above, Bitcoin is not crackable until a few more decades. Even if quantum computing is realized and currently becoming mainstream, the Bitcoin network would have migrated already to a more secure blockchain and the abandoned coins in old addresses would be marked useless (new chain, new rules).

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April 16, 2019, 11:32:37 PM
 #12

I would like to add that OP must be misinterpreting P2PKH as "early addresses" and P2SH as "new addresses".
early "outputs" were P2PK (..pubkey) instead of P2PKH (...pubkey hash).
~
that's right, early transactions used pubkey as outputs instead of pubkey hash,
so its pubkey already publicly exposed even without a single txout of that address (pubkey hash)
this becomes a concern of vulnerability if in the future quantum computing can reverse ECDSA algo
but if that happens, all addresses that has tx out (pubkey exposed) are also vulnerable

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