Quantum Computing Threat

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Full Title or Meme

Successful Quantum Computing creates an existential threat to existing cryptographic algorithms since quantum computing algorithms exist to crack traditionally intractable problems like factoring the multiplication of two large primes used in RSA.


Public key cryptography relies on certain mathematical problems that are very hard to solve, such as factoring large numbers that are the product of large prime numbers or finding the discrete logarithm of a random elliptic curve element with respect to a publicly known base point. If you know the private key components, you can sign the document or decrypt the data. If you don't have the private key and cannot solve the math, you cannot sign the document or decrypt the data.


  • Many systems exist which depend on existing public key technology. Some of these are embedded in hardware that cannot be changed once deployed.
  • Existing signatures or encrypted files will continue to need to be processed for many years to come. Certificate keys have a life time of up to 25 years.
  • The approval process for new cryptographic algorithms takes many years of standardization and test to be sure that the work effort to brake them is sufficiently high.


Public Key Cryptography has many benefits over Secret Key Cryptography, the effort to create new algorithm to preserve the current PK protocols is underway now.