The quantum security era is coming – here’s how leaders can prepare for it

When it comes to certain types of complex computational problems – advanced statical modelling in the financial sector, accelerated research and development for pharmaceutical companies or a more efficient supply chain in the automotive industry – quantum computers promise organizations transformative power.

But, for maximum transformative gains, quantum computers must manage a particular risk: the cryptography used to secure many of our daily digital tasks, such as browsing the internet or online banking, will be broken by sufficiently powerful quantum computers.

Recent alarm in the security community around reports that researchers may already be able to break a common type of cryptography on an existing quantum computer reiterates the seriousness of this risk – and how ill-prepared we are if such a report is true.

Furthermore, attackers may already be engaging in Harvest Now, Decrypt Later (HNDL) attacks in which they steal sensitive data today, such as personal health information or military secrets, and retain it until a sufficiently powerful quantum computer arises to break its encryption. If this occurs while the data retains its sensitivity, the consequences could be significant.

Therefore, organizations must act now to understand and prepare to mitigate the risk of quantum computers as soon as possible.

This is a re-post of an article of the World Economic Forum



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