Long Jie Mai 500-Word Article Summary

TO: Prof. Jason Ellis

FROM: Mai Long Jie

DATE: Sept 17, 2019

SUBJECT: 500-Word Summary of Wallden and Kashefi “Cyber Security in the Quantum Era”

Cyber Security in the quantum era is an article written by Petros Wallden and Elham Kashefi and published in Communications of the ACM journal. The article mainly points out the fast-growing trend of quantum computing. Companies such as Google, IBM, Intel, Alibaba among others are embracing quantum computing. The fast rising of quantum technologies comes with negative effects if associated with the adversaries but turns out to be positive if used by honest parties. The large use of quantum computing increases risks and threats in cyber security. Even though, if the issues are addressed through quantum cyber security, it will be easy to cope with quantum technologies in the future. The article gives detailed research information on quantum cyber security which can be approached from three different views. These views being; Post- quantum, quantumly enhanced and quantumly enabled. Additionally, the myths are addressed as to what people understand about quantum computing and facts are stated to cleat the myths.

Research has been carried out to help in achieving quantum cyber security, and this is divided into three categories; Post-quantum being the first category of the research on quantum cyber security which involves classical computation and classical communication as the resources required from the honest parties. This focuses on the hard problems for the quantum computers, security definitions and proof techniques to counter quantum adversaries. Quantumly enhanced approach uses small quantum device for quantum communication and used by the honest parties. This approach is limited only to the quantum technologies that are currently available. Quantum technologies can be used positively in cyber security research. This is possible if they are included in protocols improving on security as it is not based on any computational assumption. This research is done on QKD (Quantum Key Distribution). Quantumly enabled category stretches to the future expansion of large quantum computers and examines the security and protocols that are enabled on existing quantum computers. This uses approaches such as post-quantum computational secure protocol and having clients interact with the quantum server thus mimicking the quantum channel and avoiding information leakage (Wallden & Kashefi, 2019).

The article gives a good description of quantum computing for easy understanding before going deep into the positive and negative effects of large quantum computers. It persuades people to use quantum technologies for their advantage rather than allow cryptographic attacks threating cyber security. It clearly shows the myths and misconceptions of quantum computing and how people believe that constructing quantum computers will solve anything quickly. Also, it states the reality against the myths stated to help in understanding how quantum computing can affect cyber security if not managed. The article offers explanation on adversaries that need to be addressed to ensure that quantum security is achieved in the future, with both large quantum computers and classical communication networks. The list of all research carried out on quantum cyber security may not be exhausted in the article but it captures well the effects of quantum technologies for cryptographic attacks. Clearly, people have a long way in ensuring quantum cyber security is achieved and putting this research into consideration will greatly help in using quantum computers to improve cyber security.


Wallden, P., & Kashefi, E. (2019). Cyber security in the quantum era. Communications Of The ACM, 62(4), 120-120. doi: 10.1145/3241037

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