(BusinessInsights) Quantum computers typically use algorithms that are probabilistic. That is they don’t provide an exact answer, but an answer within a certain probability, so they will excel at certain types of problem sets, such as risk management, financial management, and other areas where a range of probabilities is an appropriate answer. That means current cryptographic algorithms used in public key cryptography such as Finite Field Cryptography, Elliptic Curve Cryptography, and RSA will readily be cracked. However, symmetric key algorithms such as AES will need larger keys to be defendable against quantum attacks. What does this mean practically? Things that rely on public key cryptography such as storage encryption and digital signatures will need to be rethought.
Experts believe the time is now to develop algorithms that can run on traditional computers that are sufficiently resilient to Shor’s algorithm running on a quantum computer powerful enough to crack commonly currently used algorithms.
A recent NIST report indicated primary concepts behind cryptographic methods that researchers hope will prove resilient to quantum computing:
Other: Other: A variety of systems have been proposed which do not fall into the above families.