Secure communication is the key concern in modern times, when the Internet plays a significant role in everyday life, ensuring that two communication partners can live on privately without any problem. These problems are solved easily by cryptographic algorithms, in which data are secured by a private key.
With improvements in quantum cryptography, which uses the quantum mechanics concept of no-cloning, new potential appears in cryptography. These qualities are crucial for the secrecy and integrity of the information to be transmitted and therefore for unauthorised people to not understand communications.
What is quantum internet?
Quantum Internet is a trending internet technology that facilitates quantum communication through Quantum bit (qubits) among remote quantum devices or nodes.
A quantum bit (qubit) describes a discrete two-level quantum state. In other words, a qubit is the simplest quantum mechanical system whose state space is bidimensional.
Such technology is going to work together to overcome the restrictions of traditional interconnection technologies with the classic internet. The principles of quantum mechanics administer this new technology where one law specifies that a system's property cannot be measured without changing the state of its own. Therefore, Qubits cannot be copied and no attempt can be made to do so, hence the secure and private connection. Because of the unique features of qubits, Quantum Internet is in many respects more advantageous than the regular Internet.
What will quantum internet do?
The quantum computer's disruptive computational capability, which is far beyond what classical computers could ever attain, justifies massive efforts. Indeed, a quantum computer can solve problems that traditional computers can't handle by utilising the strange rules of quantum mechanics. Chemical reaction simulations, industrial and supply chain optimization, financial modelling, machine learning, and increased security are some of these issues. As a result, quantum computing has the potential to transform markets and sectors totally.
For instance, Shor demonstrated the disruptive potential of quantum computing for integer factorization in 1994, which is one of the most extensively used methods for protecting Internet communications. With a classical computer, cracking a 2048-bit encryption key takes billions of years – longer than the duration of the universe – but with a quantum computer, it just takes minutes (or hours). This means that our internet banking, which has so far been secured with 1024-bit keys, could be decrypted almost instantly by a quantum computer.
How does quantum internet work?
Quantum devices interconnectivity via the Quantum Internet — a network that enables quantum communications among faraway quantum nodes by using quantum links in parallel with classical links – is a game-changing technology. Indeed, the Quantum Internet is capable of supporting functionalities that have no direct counterpart in the classical world, such as secure communications, blind computing, and an exponential increase in quantum computing power, by transmitting qubits or creating distributed entangled quantum states with no classical equivalent.
The Quantum Internet can be thought of as a virtual quantum computer with a large number of qubits that increases in size as the number of connected systems grows. As a result, with just a linear number of physical resources – i.e., wired quantum processors – a quantum network might enable exponential quantum computing speed-up.
When will quantum internet be available?
We are unable to provide an answer or estimate the timing of the various steps. However, we are convinced that the Quantum Internet will only develop as a result of multi-disciplinary collaboration between researchers and enterprises. The required competencies and skills are numerous and varied, and each is interconnected and dependent on the others.