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Q-Day is when a quantum computer so powerful is built it could break the public encryption systems. How concerned should we be?

It could be in a few years from now, or in 10 years or more. But scientists, mathematicians, and governments are not waiting idly by for the quantum threat to happen.

Q-Day is when a quantum computer so powerful is built, it could break the public encryption systems that protect our online conversations, bank accounts, and most vital infrastructure, wreaking havoc on governments and businesses.

Since the beginning of the Internet, cryptography has protected our online data and conversations by hiding or coding information that only the person receiving the message can read on traditional computers.

In the 1970s, mathematicians built encryption methods that consisted of numbers hundreds of digits long. The difficulty of mathematical problems was such that it could take at hundreds of years to solve if using the right parameter size and numbers.

To break the encryption, the numbers need to be split into their prime factors, but this could take hundreds if not thousands of years with traditional computers.

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