# Digital Currency

Digital Currency

INTRODUCTION

To understand the term cryptology we have to go back to 1935, where the term cryptology was first heard of. Cryptology, the practice, and study of techniques for secure communication, concerned with the message / plain text confidentiality, integrity, non-repudiation, and authentication. When dealing with cryptography techniques, always keep in mind that someday, there will be a way to break it. The idea is to find a way to go down with grace. This paper attempts to define the function of cryptography techniques and learn the cryptography capabilities until its being said obsolete and broken. In the cryptology essence, there are two types of cryptography encryption type, symmetric and asymmetric. The asymmetric cryptography technique, such as RSA that relies on prime factorization is hard to be tempered. It is claimed that even if some of the utility numbers are compromised, the encryption is still intact. However, there is also an algorithm that gives disclosure to a decryption key that attempts to compromise the ciphertext, such as Las Vegas algorithm that provides a quicker factorization to break RSA. Key size or key length is the size in bits of the key used in a cryptographic algorithm. An algorithm‟s vital length is distinct from its cryptographic security. The security of an algorithm cannot exceed its key length, but it can be smaller. Keys are used to controlling the operation of a cipher so that only the correct key can convert the encrypted text or ciphertext to plaintext. A key should, therefore, be large enough so that an attack on it can take a long time to decrypt. Each encryption system has different cryptographic complexity. The actual degree of security achieved overtime varies, as more computer machinery power and more powerful mathematical methods become available. Hence, cryptologists tend to look at algorithms and key length as indicator signs of potential vulnerability and move to longer key size and more difficult algorithm.

THE BITCOIN

What more can cryptography benefit us? It is formally known that the function of the cryptographic system is to secure day to day connections. Whereas the more complex algorithm and the longer secret key means the more secure the cryptography is. One of the useful function of the beauty and the state of the art mathematical functionality of cryptography can be used to create a crypto-currency. By using this case, this paper will elaborate more on how secure cryptography is. The currency-cryptograph case that will be more elaborated is called Bitcoin. Bitcoin is an open source, peer-to-peer payment network and digital currency introduced in 2009. Bitcoin has been called a crypto-currency because it uses public-key cryptography for security. Users send payments by broadcasting digitally signed messages that transfer ownership of Bitcoins, which is also the name for the unit currency. A decentralized network of specialized computers verifies and timestamps all transactions using a proof-of-work system. Bitcoins are digital coins which are not issued by any government, bank, or organization, and rely on cryptographic protocols and a distributed network of users to mint, store, and transfer. Bitcoin itself is the name given to the new digital, internet-based form of currency. Bitcoin is mostly an imaginary piece of code, with no intrinsic value. Bitcoins are like the rewards for a correct answer to a specific math problem. Both the problem and the answer are entirely unique. There will be a limit of about 21 million of these special solution rewards known as the “BTC.” Hence, the rate of new Bitcoin creation will be halved every four years until there are 21 million BTC. This invented term refers to the form of mathematics that generates the rarity behind the solutions that earn the Bitcoin rewards. Bitcoin is often represented as BTC, or 1 BTC is 1 Bitcoin. Actually, those users who gain Bitcoin is those hosts that serve as Bitcoin peer and successfully calculate and solve decryption data, thus the rewarded point on this successful attempt called Bitcoin reward. Those users that are trying to accumulate Bitcoin rewarded is called Bitcoin miner. A miner acts like a historian logging and verifying new transactions in the public ledger. As an incentive to update the ledger, the miner receives a predetermined amount of Bitcoin when his block is linked to the Blockchain. Each block is an independent challenge: the first miner to compute the proof gets paid while the rest get nothing and have to start over on a new block. Each miner‟s problem is distinct because it depends on the previous block, outstanding transactions and the unique payment to themselves. Thus, a faster computer does not guarantee victory but does increase the probability of winning.

GOVERNMENT SURVEILLANCE PROGRAM

The most significant information leaks in history are associated with the big journalism namely Wikileaks.org. WikiLeaks has combined high-end security technologies with journalism and principles. Like other media outlets conducting investigative journalism, WikiLeaks accept anonymous sources of information. However, one of the WikiLeaks not so anonymous sources is Edward Snowden.  According to NSA Director Keith Alexander, Snowden was a system administrator at the NSA, and it gave him enough security privileges to access data remotely, browse it freely, as well as take it off its home servers and copy it onto portable drives. This is how the information was leaked. A key reason behind Snowden‟s success may have been that the data was not very clearly compartmentalized, specialists in one area could easily browse information they would never plausibly need, provided they had the right security clearance. Another advantage is that he manages to successfully social-engineers about 25 login id and password from other personnel.  Snowden reveals that the National Security Agency can infiltrate even the most airtight encryption technologies has done, no matter how theoretically “secure” it may appear to be. As described in top secret documents supplied Snowden, the NSA has spent the better part of a decade and billions of dollars in an all-out war on encryption or “digital scrambling,” targeting popular data-protection technologies such as HTTPS, SSL, and VPN, among others. This disclosed document reveal that the NSA has been able to crack or circumvent a large part of the encryption technologies that protect sensitive online information such as medical records, proprietary trade secrets, banking systems, and e-commerce transactions. Various encryption technologies such as SSL and HTTPS are commonly used to protect private email accounts, Internet chats, Web searches, and online credit card purchases, but the NSA‟s cryptanalysis efforts (utilizing elaborate supercomputers) have managed to bypass practically all of the major security protocols that exist today.

COUNTERMEASURES

Most of the motives of the surveillance can safely sum up by saying that its it is providing national security at a minimal risk operation for the greater good. Yes, they do have a state-of- the-art superpower technology that can decrypt any surveillance data they had, but again, with great power comes great responsibility. NSA watches us, but they also being watched. Cybercrime is simply a more high-tech version of old real-world‟ crimes. Any crimes committed to breaking cryptography is an old-fashioned crime to gain any valuables, or in this case, valuable information. Cybercrime is defined as any offense committed using a computing device, personal computer and computer networks, including smartphones. The NSA surveillance is not for terrorism reasons, but for prevention of the cyberespionage and cybercrime reason. If we still would want to remain secure against the network, we need to do our best to ensure that the encryption can operate unimpeded.

CONCLUSION

Ensuring a strong cryptographic system is certainly not an easy task. Still, it is something that everyone has probably aimed to achieve as he or she wants to protect his or her information against newly launched attacks for a safer information system. This article has shown an understanding of the available cryptosystems currently functions. Bitcoin shows how a cryptosystem is becoming a reliable medium for new digital currencies, whereas the arguably broken cryptosystems are indeed existed but not without any countermeasures. It is therefore important to understand from whom we need to protect our information against with. The current commercial cryptosystem still provides secured encryption to asses our necessities.