A researcher named Ed Gerck recently claimed to have developed a low-cost system for cracking RSA encryption using quantum computing. RSA is the most widely used public key cryptographic algorithm to secure data today. However, cryptography experts remain highly sceptical of the purported breakthrough absent concrete proof.
Gerck asserted in a LinkedIn post that his team cracked the RSA-2048 bit encryption standard using only off-the-shelf classical hardware like smartphones, with no specialized quantum machinery. Most researchers believe breaking RSA requires a large, fault-tolerant quantum computer beyond current capabilities.
When asked for evidence of actually cracking RSA-2048 in practice, Gerck could not provide decrypted examples or demonstrations. He cited only a theoretical research paper not yet peer-reviewed. Cryptographers like Professor Alan Woodward contend successfully factoring 2048-bit keys would be extremely surprising given the state of quantum computers.
For years, experts have warned quantum algorithms like Shor’s will someday upend encryption security. Agencies urge migrating to “post-quantum” crypto like NIST’s coming standards to future-proof data. The NSA set timelines for this quantum transition by 2030.
However, realizing these exponential speedups requires major hardware advances like millions of qubits with low error rates. Today’s noisy intermediate-scale quantum prototypes lack such prerequisites. Gerck’s RSA claims absent concrete proof fail to convince the cryptography community.
Esteemed quantum computing professor Michele Mosca said even demonstrating the breaking of 1024-bit RSA would be significant. Cryptographers agree Gerck’s contention warrants high skepticism without peer validation or factorial evidence. Quantum advantages likely remain years away.
For now, the RSA encryption securing our digital world stays mathematically impenetrable. But Gerck’s claims, though unproven, spotlight ongoing risks quantum computers someday pose. As quantum progresses steadily ahead, fortifying our cryptography foundations becomes increasingly prudent before any potential quantum tremor.