Monday, 3 October 2016

Is Quantum Computing The End of Public Key Encryption

I recently published a paper with Prof Bill Buchanan at Napier Edinburgh University on the treat posed by quantum computers to public key encryption.  We've tried to put the threat in context - whilst it might pose a threat to currently popular schemes there are solutions.

I also did a talk open to the public where we introduced the subject of quantum computing and Shor's algorithm, followed by a demonstration from Prof Buchanan of some of the post quantum schemes we feel are most likely to succeed.

There is a great of misunderstanding about quantum computing, not least that it is somehow a universal speed up (a "quantum leap") in computing in general.  As we explain in the paper, there is an inconvenient truth about quantum computing which means that it is spectacular at solving some problems, but it most assuredly is not a universally faster way of processing.

The subject is going to be of significant interest in coming years, and it was even addressed in this years Internet Organised Crime Threat Assessment from Europol (Appendix A).  If you are involved in cyber security (and likely to remain so over the next few years) it is a subject worth developing an understanding of.