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NIST Moving Forward in Post Quantum Cryptography Standardization

The National Institute of Standards and Technology plans to increase coordination with agencies and industry on the second round evaluations of a project aiming to develop encryption standards to protect federal systems from threats of quantum computing, FCW reported Wednesday

Matthew Scholl, chief of Computer Security Division at NIST, announced the plan during a recent briefing to the Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board. He said NIST is preparing for the next review of algorithms submitted for its Post Quantum Cryptography Standardization project.

The agency selected 26 proposals earlier this year after the first evaluation in 2018 that included 69 algorithms. The PQC standardization aims to provide agencies with the tools to protect their computers and data from the encryption-breaking tools built with quantum computing capabilities.

"This is to ensure that we have some resilience so that when a quantum machine actually comes around having more than one algorithm with some different genetic mathematical foundations will ensure that we have a little more resiliency in that kit going forward," Scholl said.

He noted NIST did not limit the number of algorithms under PQC standardization since the agency wants to provide agencies multiple options to protect their assets.

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