Tech

Face tomorrow’s quantum hackers today


Governments and private companies around the world recognize the potential of quantum computing — which could create “value between $450 billion and $850 billion in the next 15 to 30 years,” according to estimates. calculated from a 2021 report from Boston Consulting Group – and are working to develop their own quantum strategies and research initiatives.

Prepare for the power of quantum

However, as quantum technology continues to advance, a dark cloud lurks on the horizon. Hackers could one day use this processing power to crack public-key cryptographic systems that form the basis for today’s secure interactions over the Internet, as well as other systems such as databases. public key infrastructure, code signing system, secure email and key-management system. Experts warn this is a major threat to modern digital security that needs to be addressed now. “It will completely disrupt these crypto systems,” said Dustin Moody, a mathematician at the US-based National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

Although a full-scale quantum computer has yet to become a reality, danger is imminent. Duncan Jones, head of cybersecurity at Cambridge and Colorado-based quantum computing company Quantinuum, said he was concerned about one particular issue. “If I send you some encrypted data today and someone records it, they can break into it later,” Duncan said. “Today they don’t need a quantum computer to break into it. They can just sit patiently on that data and then they can decipher it in the future.”

To protect against such quantum attacks, post-quantum cryptography is emerging as an efficient and effective solution. It refers to a new set of cryptographic algorithms, especially public key algorithms, that can be implemented using today’s classical computers.

There is an increasing urgency for businesses of all sizes and across all industries, as well as public and other organisations, to make their systems flexible and to adopt new algorithms. such quantum resistance algorithms in their security frameworks. Companies and institutions can’t afford to wait and see how the quantum computing landscape evolves. Jung Hee Cheon, a professor of mathematics at Seoul National University, South Korea, said: “The cost will increase if it is adopted after the quantum computer is established. With high stakes, a proactive, rather than reactive, stance on such threats becomes important.

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This content is produced by Insights, the custom content arm of MIT Technology Review. It was not written by the editorial board of the MIT Technology Review.



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