The dawn of the quantum computing era seems distant, but companies are rushing towards post-quantum cryptography to avoid a massive leakage of secrets. PureVPN provider has started deploying quantum-resistant keys in preparation for the post-quantum world.
Given that countries and companies are racing to build fault-tolerant quantum computers, threat actors are deploying the 'store-now-decrypt-later' (SNDL) concept, hoping to take a peek into government and corporate secrets once quantum computers are here. They exfiltrate even encrypted data, hoping to crack soon the classical encryption that protects trade secrets, intellectual property, and intelligence.
"If large-scale quantum computers are ever built, they will be able to break many of the public-key cryptosystems currently in use," the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) claims. It is expected to announce several post-quantum cryptography standards within weeks.
Virtual private network provider PureVPN, in partnership with the quantum computing company Quantinuum, introduces quantum-resistant encryption keys. PureVPN said it would strengthen privacy and anonymity on all devices, enhance remote work security, lead to safer online banking and crypto transactions, and add another layer of protection from illegal surveillance.
"To put it into perspective, mathematical problems that would currently take a traditional supercomputer until the end of time will be solved by a quantum computer in a matter of hours. That's how powerful the technology will be. Quantum computers will outperform even the most powerful supercomputer that exists today, meaning all current encryption protocols will be broken in time," Uzair Gadit, Co-Founder & CEO at PureVPN, said.
With the world's fastest supercomputers, it would take around 300 trillion years to break the 2048-bit RSA encryption. A quantum computer would be finished with a similar task in eight hours.
Imagine the consequences it might have – adversaries would be able to access the intellectual property, trade, government secrets, customers’ details, and much more sensitive data in mere hours.
While full-scale fault-tolerant computers might be decades away, they pose a threat today. According to Jack Hidary, CEO of Sandbox AQ, Google's spin-out, it might take months for an organization to determine which cryptographic algorithms and protocols are currently being used on each server and then an additional couple of years to move to new protocols.
"That's why the urgency is here now," he told Cybernews.
Quantum computers will render traditional encryption protocols, such as RSA, ECDSA, DSA, and Diffie-Hellman key agreement protocol obsolete. They are currently being used to protect everything from stock markets to sensitive state data.
A study by Dimensional Research has revealed that 89% of 600 cybersecurity experts worldwide predict that current encryption will be compromised by 2026. Two-thirds of cybersecurity leaders and experts believe that current encryption protocols stand no chance against hackers using a quantum computer.
"Encryption keys are a fundamental part of securing sensitive data. Using encryption keys generated from a verifiable quantum source enhances security above what is available today and takes risks off the table at a time where the cyber threat has never been higher," Duncan Jones, Head of Cybersecurity at Quantinuum, said.
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