Cloud Experts Not Ready for Quantum Threat

2 min read
April 2, 2018

Cloud security professionals are aware of the threats to data security posed by quantum computers, but not as aware of solutions or yet motivated enough to do as much as they can to address the problem. These are some of the findings in the most recent report, Quantum-Safe Security Awareness Survey, from the Quantum Safe Security Working Group (QSS) of the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), of which QuintessenceLabs is a member. The report presents the results of a survey undertaken by QSS to determine the overall awareness of quantum security risk within the cloud computing community.

Unsurprisingly for a group of tech experts (all those surveyed are members of the CSA), the survey found that there is an awareness of the risks posed by quantum computers within the cloud computing community, with 60 percent saying they were “somewhat” or “very aware” of the risks, with only 14 percent saying they were not at all aware. Unfortunately, that awareness doesn’t seem to have led to preparedness – only 12 percent of respondents said they were “very confident” in their current security to protect against quantum attacks, with 38 percent admitting they were “not at all confident” about the ability to handle the threat.

It’s clear that there is a greater awareness of the threat than of the existence of current solutions, as 47 percent of respondents neither agreed nor disagreed with the statement that the market has quantum–safe technologies that can help protect against quantum-based cyber-attacks. The lack of awareness of solutions seems to have translated into a lack of action.

Of the 60 percent of those surveyed who said their company is currently taking no action to future-proof their data against the threat of quantum computers, conflicting priorities seem to be the biggest stumbling block, since 44 percent said “it’s not a priority,” closely followed by a lack of awareness of solutions given as a reason by 33 percent. “No buy-in” (nine percent) was the third most popular answer and one presumably related to the first two.

“While there is still a tremendous amount of work to be done in convincing the industry of the importance of including the threat of quantum computing in enterprise security strategies, the good news is that there is a great deal of interest in learning more about the threat quantum presents and how it can be mitigated,” said Jane Melia, CSA QSS WG co-chair and our vice president of strategic business development. “This latest report provides an excellent context for moving forward in our efforts to educate the industry.”

There is a whole lot more to unpack in the survey results, along with some suggestions from the QSS on what companies should do to better prepare. You can find all that at QLabs Resource Library.