Post Quantum Cryptography

by James Birnie

Security English
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Topic
Security
Language
English
Description

Quantum computers are real and are starting to be used for some interesting applications. As well as many applications in finance, organic chemistry and complex dynamical systems there is an ugly elephant in the quantum room. That elephant is Shor's algorithm.

Given a sufficiently powerful quantum computer, Shor's algorithm can factorise numbers in polynomial time. I have implemented it on a quantum simulator and it has been used on real quantum computers. When quantum computers are powerful enough nearly all the encryption techniques that we currently rely on will be useless.

Should we care about this now?

James Birnie
Principal Consultant, Codurance

James has worked in software since the 1990s, when TDD was something you studied but never did and Agile and Lean were words you used to describe athletes. After working in a startup for 9 years, where he learnt the hard way about Agile, Lean Experiments, Microservices and Pipelines, he started a new life as a consultant in 2015. James is now a principal at Codurance where he tries to encourage positive business transformation through software excellence and a focus on outcome driven cross functional teams.