Learn how the laws of quantum physics can be used for secure communications in this video from NOVA: Rise of the Hackers. A quantum computer could break public key codes that are commonly used to encrypt information. Quantum cryptography uses quantum mechanical effects, such as the observer effect, to encode information in a more secure way. An example illustrates how an eavesdropper would affect information being carried by photons — because of the observer effect, it would be clear if the message had been observed. Secret keys provided by quantum cryptography are already being used by agencies that have a need for extreme security.
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