Sunday, June 12, 2011

Prime numbers cannot be factored

Peter Woit has a review of Jim Baggott’s The Quantum Story: A History in 40 Moments. The book says:
This means that a quantum computer could in principle be used to crack the encryption systems used for most Internet transactions, which are based on factoring large prime numbers. Not to worry, though, as Internet security could perhaps be restored using cryptography systems based on quantum entanglement! [p.348, fn.12]
No. Prime numbers cannot be factored. Quantum computers will not be cracking anything. Quantum entanglement is useless for internet security.

It looks like a good book, as long as you don't take its conclusions seriously.

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