NASA's not so keen to talk about quantum computer security

Agency quickly deflects talk of anti-hacker measures

The D-Wave 2X quantum computer at NASA's Advanced Supercomputing facility in Silicon Valley is an impressive machine. Engineers from NASA and Google are using it to research a whole new area of computing -- one that's years from commercialization but could revolutionize the way computers solve complex problems.

The machine is also being used by researchers at universities, and it's hooked up to the Internet, like other NASA supercomputers made available to academics.

Engineers who showed the machine to the media on Tuesday were keen to talk about its capabilities, but less so about the security measures in place to stop hackers.

"It's behind various security firewalls, with RSA security tokens to get in," said David Bell, a director at the Universities Space Research Association, in response to a question.

"We are very much aware of systems being hacked," said Rupak Biswas, who heads exploration technology at the NASA Ames Research Center, in response to another question. "NASA, of course, is a major target."

Biswas said he didn't want to get into specifics, beyond explaining that there are "very strict processes as to how and who can get onto these systems."

The line of questioning was quickly shut down by a NASA moderator, who said the topic was "for later discussion at another time."

Here's video of the reply.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags GoogleNASA

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Bang and Olufsen Beosound Stage - Dolby Atmos Soundbar

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Nakamichi Delta 100 3-Way Hi Fi Speaker System

Learn more >

ASUS ROG, ACRONYM partner for Special Edition Zephyrus G14

Learn more >

Sony WF-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit for Nintendo Switch

Learn more >

Philips Sonicare Diamond Clean 9000 Toothbrush

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

SunnyBunny Snowflakes 20 LED Solar Powered Fairy String

Learn more >

Teac 7 inch Swivel Screen Portable DVD Player

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?