Menu
Google hopes to thwart quantum computers from cracking today's Internet encryption

Google hopes to thwart quantum computers from cracking today's Internet encryption

Google is testing out new cryptography that could future-proof Internet communications

The encryption methods used to secure today’s Internet communications won’t be impenetrable forever. More powerful “quantum computers” on the horizon could very well crack them.

That’s why Google is testing out new cryptography that computers in the future might not be able to break.

The processing power offered by "hypothetical, future" quantum computers could be enough to “decrypt any internet communication that was recorded today,” wrote Matt Braithwaite, a Google software engineer in a company blog post on Thursday.

This could affect the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol used when visiting websites. Old information, originally meant to be secured for decades, could suddenly become exposed, he added.

The quantum computers available today, however, are still small and experimental, but the tech industry has been moving closer to making them a mainstream reality.

They represent a leap over current computers, which rely on data represented as 0s and 1s. Quantum computers, on the other hand, use qubits that can simultaneously be both 0 and 1, which can help them run far more efficiently.

Regardless of when quantum computers arrive, Google still wants to prepare for the security risks posed by them.

To future-proof today’s Internet communications, the search giant will deploy what it’s calling “post-quantum cryptography” and will test it using its browser Chrome Canary.

The experiment will only cover a small fraction of the connections between the browser and Google’s servers, and be used on top of its current encryption algorithm.

In its test, Google is using a cryptography algorithm called “New Hope." However, the test will only last two years, and Google hopes it can replace the algorithm with something better.

“The post-quantum algorithm might turn out to be breakable even with today's computer,” Braithwaite wrote. “Alternatively, if the post-quantum algorithm turns out to be secure then it'll protect the connection even against a future, quantum computer."

Users of Chrome Canary can tell if the post-quantum algorithm is in use by checking the browser's security panel and looking for "CECPQ1" in the key exchange.

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags security

Featured

Slideshows

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel

Arrow Electronics introduced Tenable Network Security to local resellers in Sydney last week, officially launching the distributor's latest security partnership across Australia and New Zealand. Representing the first direct distribution agreement locally for Tenable specifically, the deal sees Arrow deliver security solutions directly to mid-market and enterprise channel partners on both sides of the Tasman.

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel
Examining the changing job scene in the Kiwi channel

Examining the changing job scene in the Kiwi channel

Typically, the New Year brings new opportunities for personnel within the Kiwi channel. 2017 started no differently, with a host of appointments, departures and reshuffles across vendor, distributor and reseller businesses. As a result, the job scene across New Zealand has changed - here’s a run down of who is working where in the year ahead…

Examining the changing job scene in the Kiwi channel
​What are the top 10 tech trends for New Zealand in 2017?

​What are the top 10 tech trends for New Zealand in 2017?

Digital Transformation (DX) has been a critical topic for business over the last few years and IDC is now predicting a step change as DX reaches macroeconomic levels. By 2020 a DX economy will emerge and it will become the core of what New Zealand industries focus on. From the board level through to the C-Suite, Kiwi organisations must be prepared to think and act digital when the DX economy emerges in 2017.

​What are the top 10 tech trends for New Zealand in 2017?
Show Comments