In January of 2009, bitcoin was introduced. In March of 2017, a single bitcoin was worth more than an ounce of gold. Two months later, it’s value has almost doubled.
The boom has brought terms like bitcoin, cryptocurrency, and decentralisation to the mainstream, and inspired a new wave of curiosity from eager prospectors. The question is once again being asked: is crypto the future of financial transactions?
“No”, insist the skeptics. “It’s ludicrous to believe that government and financial institutions would cede control of currency.”
According to Cyber Toa CEO and cryptocurrency expert Mandy Simpson however, they won’t have a choice.
In a recent talk for SingularityU, Simpson explains why a digital ‘cash’, one that makes online transactions as easy and direct as handing someone physical currency, is an inevitability.
The final product may not necessarily be bitcoin, ethereum, or any of the other currencies currently in circulation, but it will be founded on the security platform that made them possible: blockchain.
Blockchain is a decentralised digital record keeping database that captures records of transactions in blocks. These blocks each contain a fragment of the former block – an encrypted signature that makes the system, essentially, incorruptible.
For a cracker to even attempt to pervert the blockchain, Simpson estimates that they would require the equivalent processing power of 25 million copies of the world’s most powerful super computer.
Currently, bitcoin’s blockchain is responsible for processing and recording hundreds of thousands of digital cash transactions alone, but Simpson provides several examples of how the technology could expand to even broader transactions.
Through their encryption methods, blockchains could digitise land titles, ensuring records are kept securely. This will be most valuable in countries like Ghana, where 70% of land ownership is undocumented, and the rest is easily manipulated by untrustworthy officials. It could also track the mining and sale of diamonds, so that customers can avoid buying blood diamonds or stolen property.
These are only some examples of how blockchain technology can usher in a more prosperous, equal, and ultimately secure world.
You can watch Mandy Simpsons’ presentation below.