Oct
04
2018
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BlackBerry races ahead of security curve with quantum-resistant solution

Quantum computing represents tremendous promise to completely alter technology as we’ve known it, allowing operations that weren’t previously possible with traditional computing. The downside of these powerful machines is that they could be strong enough to break conventional cryptography schemes. Today, BlackBerry announced a new quantum-resistant code signing service to help battle that possibility.

The service is meant to anticipate a problem that doesn’t exist yet. Perhaps that’s why BlackBerry hedged its bets in the announcement saying, “The new solution will allow software to be digitally signed using a scheme that will be hard to break with a quantum computer.” Until we have fully functioning quantum computers capable of breaking current encryption, we probably won’t know for sure if this works.

But give BlackBerry credit for getting ahead of the curve and trying to solve a problem that has concerned technologists as quantum computers begin to evolve. The solution, which will be available next month, is actually the product of a partnership between BlackBerry and Isara Corporation, a company whose mission is to build quantum-safe security solutions. BlackBerry is using Isara’s cryptographic libraries to help sign and protect code as security evolves.

“By adding the quantum-resistant code signing server to our cybersecurity tools, we will be able to address a major security concern for industries that rely on assets that will be in use for a long time. If your product, whether it’s a car or critical piece of infrastructure, needs to be functional 10-15 years from now, you need to be concerned about quantum computing attacks,” Charles Eagan, BlackBerry’s chief technology officer, said in a statement.

While experts argue how long it could take to build a fully functioning quantum computer, most agree that it will take between 50 and 100 qubit computers to begin realizing that vision. IBM released a 20 qubit computer last year and introduced a 50 qubit prototype. A qubit represents a single unit of quantum information.

At TechCrunch Disrupt last month, Dario Gil, IBM’s vice president of artificial intelligence and quantum computing, and Chad Rigetti, a former IBM researcher who is founder and CEO at Rigetti Computing, predicted we could be just three years away from the point where a quantum computer surpasses traditional computing.

IBM Quantum Computer

IBM Quantum Computer. Photo: IBM

Whether it happens that quickly or not remains to be seen, but experts have been expressing security concerns around quantum computing as they grow more powerful, and BlackBerry is addressing that concern by coming up with a solution today, arguing that if you are creating critical infrastructure you need to future-proof your security.

BlackBerry, once known for highly secure phones, and one of the earliest popular business smartphones, has pivoted to be more of a security company in recent years. This announcement, made at the BlackBerry Security Summit, is part of the company’s focus on keeping enterprises secure.

Jul
13
2018
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Chad Rigetti to talk quantum computing at Disrupt SF

Even for the long-standing giants of the tech industry, quantum computing is one of the most complicated subjects to tackle. So how does a five-year old startup compete?

Chad Rigetti, the namesake founder of Rigetti Computing, will join us at Disrupt SF 2018 to help us break it all down.

Rigetti’s approach to quantum computing is two-fold: on one front, the company is working on the design and fabrication of its own quantum chips; on the other, the company is opening up access to its early quantum computers for researchers and developers by way of its cloud computing platform, Forest.

Rigetti Computing has raised nearly $70 million to date according to Crunchbase, with investment from some of the biggest names around. Meanwhile, labs around the country are already using Forest to explore the possibilities ahead.

What’s the current state of quantum computing? How do we separate hype from reality? Which fields might quantum computing impact first — and how can those interested in quantum technology make an impact? We’ll talk all this and more at Disrupt SF 2018.

Passes to Disrupt SF are available at the Early Bird rate until July 25 here.

Nov
10
2017
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IBM makes 20 qubit quantum computing machine available as a cloud service

 IBM has been offering quantum computing as a cloud service since last year when it came out with a 5 qubit version of the advanced computers. Today, the company announced that it’s releasing 20-qubit quantum computers, quite a leap in just 18 months. A qubit is a single unit of quantum information. The company also announced that IBM researchers had successfully built a 50 qubit… Read More

Sep
25
2017
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Microsoft places its bets on quantum computing

 At its Ignite conference, Microsoft today put its stake in the ground and discussed its progress in building a quantum computer and giving developers tools to experiment with this new computing paradigm on their existing machines. Read More

Mar
05
2017
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IBM adds new API to quantum computing cloud service

IBM Quantum Computer IBM announced today that it was updating its Quantum Experience cloud with a new API that it hopes will increase the abilities of researchers and other interested parties to build more sophisticated applications with its experimental quantum computing system.
Last May, IBM opened up its 5 qubit computer in its NY state labs to the public in the form of a cloud service. The hope was that by… Read More

Jan
24
2017
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D-Wave ups its quantum annealing game to 2000 qubits

2000q-extracted-image Universal quantum computers don’t exist, but that hasn’t stopped D-Wave from carving out its own place in the quantum computing market. Today, the 17-year-old company is announcing its forth quantum chip, the 2000Q, doubling the number of qubits on its exiting 1000Q chip. The Burnaby, British Columbia based company’s chips fall under a specific class of quantum… Read More

May
03
2016
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IBM launches quantum computing as a cloud service

IBM quantum computer Quantum computing is still very much in the early research stage, but IBM is hoping to accelerate the progress around it by making a quantum computer available to researchers as a cloud service. It is a bold and ambitious idea, although still very much a small step in trying to understand quantum computing processing. IBM is allowing interested parties to access a 5 qubit quantum… Read More

Apr
29
2015
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IBM Researchers Can Now Spot Errors In Quantum Calculations

IBM researcher Jerry Chow in the quantum computing lab at IBM's T.J. Watson Research Center. IBM researchers say they’ve solved a big piece of the quantum computing puzzle with a new system for protecting against errors that can crop up among quantum bits, or ‘qubits.’
The issue the team is addressing is similar to an error that can crop up among the bits storing data in traditional computing. Sometimes, a bit that ought to be a 0 turns up as a 1 (or vice-versa)… Read More

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