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President Biden is expected to sign an executive order and a national security memorandum Wednesday to advance quantum information science in an effort to put the United States in a position to “beyond adversaries well” and mitigate risks posed by emerging technology. for national and economic security.
A senior administration official said the United States has “always been a world leader” in developing new technologies, including quantum, a broad field of science and engineering.
Quantum technologies are not a replacement for traditional computers, but a “totally different kind of computer” with the ability to analyze information in ways that conventional computers cannot. Quantitative technologies, according to officials, have shown the potential to drive innovation in the US economy.
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“The goal of both the Executive Order and the National Strategy Note is to make sure that we go well ahead of everyone else, both by advancing quantum information science and the benefits it can bring from energy to medicine, in various areas of the economy, as well as by starting what is likely To be a decade of transition to protect our systems from an adversary with a potential quantum computer,” a senior administration official said.
“America should begin a protracted process of modernizing our IT infrastructure today to protect against the threat of quantum computing tomorrow,” the official added.
The President’s Executive Order is set to “promote” those developments by committing to advancing those breakthroughs. The order is set to strengthen the National Quantum Initiative Advisory Committee, the federal government’s advisory body for quantum information science and technology, by placing it under the authority of the White House.
A senior administration official said the move would ensure the president, Congress, federal departments and agencies, and the general public receive “the latest, most accurate and relativistic quantum information, and science and technology to advance U.S. policymaking in this area.”
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The president is also set to sign a national security memorandum outlining his administration’s plans to address the risks quantum computers pose to America’s cybersecurity.
“The current research shows that at some point in the not-too-distant future, when quantum information science matures and quantum computers are able to reach a sufficient size and level of sophistication, they will be able to crack much of the encryption that currently secures our digital system,” a senior administration official said.
But the official stressed that cybersecurity and technological innovation are not incompatible.
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“They underscore the president’s commitment to promoting innovation and the latest science and technology while continuing to take the necessary steps to protect the economy and infrastructure for the future,” the official said. “This balanced approach to promotion, promotion, and protection builds on the president’s conviction that cybersecurity and technological innovation are not mutually exclusive. Rather, they are complementary and essential to each other’s success.”
The President’s National Security Memorandum sets out requirements for federal agencies to modernize those encryption systems and directs the agencies to develop “comprehensive plans to protect US intellectual property, research and development, and other sensitive technology” from being acquired by adversaries.