Quantum computing technology will be affecting most of us in a direct or indirect way. We have stated in a prior article that: “A quantum computer is a highly-advanced computer system that works exponentially faster than today’s conventional computers. Quantum computing is the practice of studying quantum computers and their potential. This practice is growing and has caused the rapid decrease in the size of computers at the same time as these systems are rapidly increasing in their capability.”
Now, quantum computing has become a reality and technology companies have launched projects in order to compete in this sector. The question is how quantum computers will affect us.
First, since quantum computers are faster than conventional computers, they can break passwords or decrypt encryptions in a shorter time. This has caused concern over privacy and security which has forced companies to invest in quantum resistant cryptography. This technology and its potential ramifications on encrypted networks will also affect EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which outlines the rules and regulations for protecting unauthorized access. The United States government has also reacted and Congress has passed H.R. 6227 in order to implement the National Quantum Initiative Act that states as follows:
TITLE I: NATIONAL QUANTUM INITIATIVE
Section 101: This bill directs the President to implement a National Quantum Initiative Program to, among other things, establish the goals and priorities for a 10-year plan to accelerate the development of quantum information science and technology applications.
Quantum information science is the use of the laws of quantum physics for the storage, transmission, manipulation, or measurement of information.
Section 103: The National Science and Technology Council shall establish a Subcommittee on Quantum Information Science, including membership from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), to guide program activities.
Section 104: The President must establish a National Quantum Initiative Advisory Committee to advise the President and subcommittee on the program and trends and developments in quantum information science and technology.
TITLE II: NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF STANDARDS AND TECHNOLOGY QUANTUM ACTIVITIES
Section 201: NIST shall carry out specified quantum science activities and convene a consortium to identify the future measurement, standards, cybersecurity, and other needs to support the development of a quantum information science and technology industry.
TITLE III: NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION QUANTUM ACTIVITIES
Section 301: The National Science Foundation shall:
- carry out a basic research and education program on quantum information science and engineering, and
- award grants for the establishment of Multidisciplinary Centers for Quantum Research and Education.
TITLE IV: DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY QUANTUM ACTIVITIES
Section 401: The Department of Energy shall carry out a basic research program on quantum information science.
Section 402: The Office of Science of Department of Energy shall establish and operate National Quantum Information Science Research Centers to conduct basic research to accelerate scientific breakthroughs in quantum information science and technology.
This program was launched as Public Law No: 115-368 to provide for a coordinated Federal program to accelerate quantum research and development for the economic and national security.
Second, quantum computing can impact blockchain technology. So, business owners who are engaged in mining digital currencies will also be affected by quantum computers. The conventional computers that were used to mine digital currencies will be outdated and new and much faster quantum computers will take over the digital currency mining process.
Third, cloud computing will be affected in order to avoid latency issues. In general, cloud computing involves the sending of data from the source to a remote data center that is usually owned, operated, or managed by a third party. Thereafter, the data can be transferred to other locations pursuant to the data owner’s request. That said, the usage of conventional, and much slower computers, will become obsolete when quantum computers enter the market.
We work with clients on these technologies and their impacts on privacy, security, and regulations. Please feel free to contact our law firm in order to speak with an attorney who has knowledge about quantum computers and the related legal issues.