The Transition from Classical to Post-Quantum Cryptography
draft-hoffman-c2pq-02

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Network Working Group                                         P. Hoffman
Internet-Draft                                                     ICANN
Intended status: Informational                           August 14, 2017
Expires: February 15, 2018

       The Transition from Classical to Post-Quantum Cryptography
                         draft-hoffman-c2pq-02

Abstract

   Quantum computing is the study of computers that use quantum features
   in calculations.  For over 20 years, it has been known that if very
   large, specialized quantum computers could be built, they could have
   a devastating effect on asymmetric classical cryptographic algorithms
   such as RSA and elliptic curve signatures and key exchange, as well
   as (but in smaller scale) on symmetric cryptographic algorithms such
   as block ciphers, MACs, and hash functions.  There has already been a
   great deal of study on how to create algorithms that will resist
   large, specialized quantum computers, but so far, the properties of
   those algorithms make them onerous to adopt before they are needed.

   Small quantum computers are being built today, but it is still far
   from clear when large, specialized quantum computers will be built
   that can recover private or secret keys in classical algorithms at
   the key sizes commonly used today.  It is important to be able to
   predict when large, specialized quantum computers usable for
   cryptanalysis will be possible so that organization can change to
   post-quantum cryptographic algorithms well before they are needed.

   This document describes quantum computing, how it might be used to
   attack classical cryptographic algorithms, and possibly how to
   predict when large, specialized quantum computers will become
   feasible.

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
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   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any

Hoffman                 Expires February 15, 2018               [Page 1]
Internet-Draft      Classical to Post-Quantum Crypto         August 2017

   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on February 15, 2018.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2017 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
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   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     1.1.  Disclaimer  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     1.2.  Executive Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     1.3.  Terminology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
     1.4.  Not Covered: Post-Quantum Cryptographic Algorithms  . . .   5
     1.5.  Not Covered: Quantum Cryptography . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
     1.6.  Where to Read More  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
   2.  Brief Introduction to Quantum Computers . . . . . . . . . . .   6
     2.1.  Quantum Computers that Recover Cryptographic Keys . . . .   7
   3.  Physical Designs for Quantum Computers  . . . . . . . . . . .   7
     3.1.  Qubits, Error Detection, and Error Correction . . . . . .   8
     3.2.  Promising Physical Designs for Quantum Computers  . . . .   8
     3.3.  Challenges for Physical Designs . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   4.  Quantum Computers and Public Key Cryptography . . . . . . . .   9
     4.1.  Explanation of Shor's Algorithm . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
     4.2.  Properties of Large, Specialized Quantum Computers Needed
           for Recovering RSA Public Keys  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   5.  Quantum Computers and Symmetric Key Cryptography  . . . . . .  10
     5.1.  Explanation of Grover's Algorithm . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
     5.2.  Properties of Large, Specialized Quantum Computers Needed
           for Recovering Symmetric Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
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