NIST Continues The Search For Post-Quantum Encryption
With the potential to break all existing forms of encryption, quantum computing poses a unique challenge…
An article review.
While quantum computing has been a buzzword for some time now the technology remains largely theoretical, with small scale proofs-of-concept that still suffer from serious limitations. That hasn’t stopped security researchers from worrying about the technology’s potential impact on encryption though, as in theory quantum computing could break all existing algorithms.
Realizing that threat, NIST began evaluating next-generation encryption algorithms that could withstand an attack from a quantum computer in 2016, and the process has reached its final stage…though not without some headaches. Just months before NIST was to announce the finalists in its competition, it was discovered four of the algorithms could be broken with currently existing computers.
We’re likely quite some time away from the deployment of practical quantum computing, with some experts claiming it may not ever be made practical. Despite this uncertainty NIST is attempting to make sure what’s encrypted today can remain encrypted tomorrow, regardless of what developments may arise.
Original article by Bruce Schneier writing for Schneier.com.