Network Security

McAfee’s Grobman pushes for a post-quantum world mindset


The inevitable rise and potential disruptive force quantum computing will present when it becomes a reality means it is never too early to start preparing.

These words of wisdom came from McAfee CTO Steve Grobman during his keynote address at RSA Conference 2020.

Steve Grobman, McAfee

Grobman noted that even if quantum computing, and its ability to decrypt even the most sophisticated encryption algorithms, is still decades away organizations and governments need to prepare now. That is because truly vital data, think military secrets or Social Security Numbers, are vital to their owners for a lifetime – if not longer.

Quantum is a real risk today, assume adversaries are accessing and taking your encrypted data today with an eye toward decrypting whenever quantum computing becomes a reality, Grobman said. The mindset that must be adapted is for security professionals is if sets of data can be decrypted in 10 or 15 years how will that impact the organization.

“We need quantum resistant algorithms immediately. NIST is doing good work but the quantum budget is just $30 million,” he said, adding this is just a fraction of the federal budget being dedicated to solving a national security threat.

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