Financial Cryptography and Data Security

Volume 7397 of the series Lecture Notes in Computer Science pp 399-414

Bitter to Better — How to Make Bitcoin a Better Currency

  • Simon BarberAffiliated withPalo Alto Research Center
  • , Xavier BoyenAffiliated withPalo Alto Research Center
  • , Elaine ShiAffiliated withUniversity of California
  • , Ersin UzunAffiliated withPalo Alto Research Center

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Bitcoin is a distributed digital currency which has attracted a substantial number of users. We perform an in-depth investigation to understand what made Bitcoin so successful, while decades of research on cryptographic e-cash has not lead to a large-scale deployment. We ask also how Bitcoin could become a good candidate for a long-lived stable currency. In doing so, we identify several issues and attacks of Bitcoin, and propose suitable techniques to address them.