订阅

多平台阅读

微信订阅

杂志

申请纸刊赠阅

订阅每日电邮

移动应用

商业 - 科技

量子计算机恐将威胁网络安全,必须立刻行动起来

Robert Hackett 2018年12月18日

量子计算机通过未来的迭代,可以解决普通计算机无望处理的数学问题。它们会极大提升经典计算的速度,开辟有待科学探索的全新未知领域。

在约克敦海茨托马斯·J·沃森研究中心埃罗·沙里宁风格的空旷外部区域,穿着蓝色牛仔裤的IBM研究员正在组装遵循量子力学规则打造的新一代超级计算机。这些充满未来气息的机器挂在稳定的金属支架上,看起来就像金色的枝形吊灯,或是机器蜂房。这些设备在真空的超低温制冷箱内仿佛魔术般运转着。该技术可谓集智慧与美丽于一身。

这些量子计算机通过未来的迭代,可以解决普通计算机无望处理的数学问题。它们会极大提升经典计算的速度,准确模拟化学反应等复杂的自然现象,开辟有待科学探索的全新未知领域。尽管看起来有些神秘,但这类机器会触及从药品研发到数字安全等我们生活的方方面面。

Inside the stark and sweeping Eero Saarinen-styled exterior of the Thomas J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, IBM’s blue jeans-wearing boffins are assembling a new generation of super-powered computers built on quantum mechanical principles. These otherworldly machines dangle from sturdy, metal frames, looking like golden chandeliers, or robotic beehives. The devices perform their magical-seeming operations inside vacuum-sealed, super-cooled refrigerator encasements. It’s a technology that combines both brains and beauty.

Future iterations of these quantum computers will be able to solve mathematical problems ordinary computers have no hope of computing. They will vastly speed up classical calculations, accurately model complex natural phenomena like chemical reactions, and open as yet unexplored frontiers for scientific inquiry. Despite seeming arcane, machines like these will touch every aspect of our lives—from drug discovery to digital security.

IBM的科学家正在检查量子计算的硬件设备。图片来源:Courtesy of IBM.

后面所说的这个领域带来了巨大的挑战。量子计算机相比普通计算机的一大优势在于擅长处理海量数据,这项工作对当今的计算机难度很大,以至于它成为了如今所有加密策略的基础。另一方面,一台足够先进的量子计算机能够势如破竹地解决这些数学问题,就像电影《异形》(Alien)系列里异形的血液熔化钢铁那样。量子计算的前景迫使人们对密码学进行彻底的重新思考。

如今的加密手段遭到淘汰的速度可能会比大多数人预测得还要更快。谷歌(Google)的高级软件工程师亚当·兰利最近在一篇博文中指出,一些专家预测这种当代的“千年虫漏洞”可能会在十年之内出现。安大略省滑铁卢的量子计算研究所(Institute for Quantum Computing)的联合创始人米歇尔·莫斯卡预测在2026年之前,量子技术有七分之一的概率会取得突破,破解如今常见的加密标准RSA-2048。如果真的如此,那么重新构建数字防线的最佳时间就是现在。正如兰利所述,空等别人指导如何设立标准“看起来很危险”,没有时间可以浪费了。

美国国家科学、工程和医学院(National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine)最近的一篇论文支持了兰利的观点。这一研究机构认为,尽管破解加密手段的量子计算机不太可能在十年之内出现,但必须尽快着手准备防御措施。与论文一起发布的通讯稿表示,由于网络标准需要超过十年时间才能实施,研发能够抵抗攻击的新算法“如今至关重要”。

量子计算的时代正在迅速到来。IBM、谷歌、微软(Microsoft)、英特尔(Intel)等《财富》美国500强公司正在与加利福尼亚州的Rigetti等小型初创公司一起钻研这项技术。与此同时,中国和其他国家也在它的研发上投入了数十亿美元。无论哪个国家率先掌握了所谓的量子霸权,就会发现自己拥有了前所未有的权力——相当于获得了互联网的X射线透视镜。

也就是说,我们得紧急武装自己了。(财富中文网)

译者:严匡正

This latter area presents significant challenges. One advantage quantum computers have over traditional ones is a knack for factoring large numbers, an operation so difficult for present-day computers that it has become the foundation for almost all today’s encryption schemes. A sufficiently advanced quantum computer, on the other hand, can chew through these math problems with the destructive force of that metal-melting Xenomorph blood in the Alien film franchise. The prospect of quantum computing necessitates a complete rethinking of cryptography.

Today’s encryption may be rendered obsolete sooner than most people anticipate. As Adam Langley, a senior software engineer at Google, has pointed out in a recent blog post, some experts predict this latter-day Y2K could occur within the decade. Michele Mosca, cofounder of the Institute for Quantum Computing in Waterloo, Ontario, has estimated a 1-in-7 chance that quantum breakthroughs will defeat RSA-2048, a common encryption standard, by 2026. If that’s true, then the time to begin reengineering our digital defenses is now. As Langley writes, waiting around for guidance on standards “seems dangerous”; there’s no time to lose.

Buttressing Langley’s view is a recent paper out of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The research organization determined that, while the advent of an encryption-busting quantum computer is unlikely within the decade, preparations to defend against one must be undertaken as soon as possible. Since web standards take more than a decade to implement, a press release accompanying the paper warned, developing new, attack-resistant algorithms “is critical now.”

The era of quantum computation fast approaches. Fortune 500 companies like IBM, Google, Microsoft, and Intel, are plugging away on the tech alongside smaller startups, like Calif.-based Rigetti. Nation states like China are, meanwhile, dumping billions of dollars into research and development. Whichever entity achieves so-called quantum supremacy first will find itself in possession of unprecedented power—the equivalent of X-Ray goggles for the Internet.

That is, unless we act with urgency to armor up.

我来点评

  最新文章

最新文章:

500强情报中心

财富专栏