exploring privacy, security and scalability for CBDCs


The use of cash is declining worldwide as digital payments continue to grow. Over the past decade, the number of cashless payments has grown annually at 16%, with over 1 trillion transactions in CPMI countries alone. Amid this development, concerns are being raised about the potential erosion of privacy. Unsurprisingly, public consultations by central banks on retail central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) show that privacy is a fundamental user requirement.

Project Tourbillon builds two CBDC prototypes that address three features simultaneously:

  • privacy by enabling payer anonymity,
  • security by implementing quantum-safe cryptography; and
  • scalability by testing the prototype’s ability to handle a growing number of transactions using payment data. 

Project Tourbillon comes from BIS Innovation Hub Swiss Centre.

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