Quantum Computing is On Track for 2025.In the cryptology world, there is a hot debate about what to do about this possible collapse of the technological underpinning of all our secure communications. The claim is that the Chinese are intercepting and recording encrypted transmissions so they can crack them in 2025 or 2035.
Back in 2022 Arvind Krishna, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of IBM Corporation, surprised the audience, and many viewers of this channel by asserting that we will have quantum computing by 2025. A year later, again during Davos the IBM CEO confirmed that IBM is respecting the timeline and we will have quantum computing by 2025. It will be powerful enough to create a major breakthrough in science, but also dangerous enough to make some of the worst fears come true. Others seem to agree.
There are several issues. Public key agreements, signatures, hashes, and ciphers. The popular hashes and ciphers are safe. The signatures could be forged by a quantum computer, but that cannot cause any trouble unless it is an active attack. Signatures are used to verify a piece of data, and then discarded. There is no harm in continuing to use RSA or elliptic curve signatures until the million-qubit quantum computer is operational.
That leaves the only concern about public key agreements on data that is to be secret for 10 years. The padlock icon on your browser was largely invented to assure consumers that their credit card numbers would not be stolen if they ordered a product from Ebay or Amazon.
Even if quantum computers are invented, I am pretty confident that no one will use them to steal credit card numbers. There are too many easier ways to get them.
I guess I will revisit these predictions in two years on this blog. I doubt that we will see any significant advances.