A member of the United States Space Force (USSF), an independent branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for military operations in space, has called for investigating Proof-of-Work (PoW) systems such as Bitcoin (BTC) to protect the country against cyber attacks.
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Investigate Bitcoin against cyber attacks
This concerns Jason Lowerey, an astronautical engineer with the USSF, who on December 2 in a open letter to the Defense Innovation Board (DIB), an independent innovation advisory board within the U.S. Department of Defense, discussed Bitcoin’s “national strategic importance.”
Bitcoin is particularly considered an alternative to the traditional financial system. However, Lowerey states that few people are aware of the fact that the blockchain can also be used ”to secure all forms of data, messages or command signals”. “This misconception underestimates the broad strategic significance of the technology for cybersecurity and therefore for national security,” Lowerey wrote.
Lowerey explains in his letter that a PoW system like Bitcoin, which uses computing power to secure the network, could work to deter adversaries from cyberattacks due to the high costs involved.
With today’s Bitcoin hashrate, or the total computing power of the network, it is extremely expensive to gain control over the network. For this you will have to control the majority of the computing power. The cutthroat competition among Bitcoin miners makes the network very resistant to external attacks.
New cybersecurity revolution thanks to Bitcoin
Bitcoin’s potential applications in cybersecurity are enormous, according to Lowerey, and could play an important role in maintaining the United States’ position as a global leader.
According to Lowerey, Bitcoin has the potential to spark a “cybersecurity revolution”:
“It’s the beginning of a revolution in cybersecurity. It turns the global power grid into a large, physically expensive computer, or ‘macrochip,’ and uses it to physically contain malicious actors and secure a wide range of data and messages traversing the Internet.”
Lowerey concludes that in his view, the US Department of Defense may have already ”lost valuable time” by not implementing Bitcoin into its arsenal.
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