President Biden today signed into law legislation to set the Federal government on the path to defending against quantum computing-enabled data breaches that will become more of a threat as quantum tech advances in the coming years.


The Quantum Computing Cybersecurity Preparedness Act – introduced by Sens. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., and Rob Portman, R-Ohio – requires the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to begin moving forward with migrating IT systems to post-quantum cryptography for many Federal agencies.


In addition, the legislation requires the White House to help with creating guidance for agencies to assess critical systems, and relay those assessments to Congress for funding that may be necessary to protect systems against quantum tech threats.


It also requires OMB to send an annual report to Congress that includes a strategy for how to address post-quantum cryptography risks from across the government.


The legislation passed the House earlier this year, and the Senate on Dec. 9 unanimously voted to approve the bill. The House legislation is sponsored by Reps. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., and Nancy Mace, R-S.C.


“Data breaches exploited by quantum computing are a serious national security concern. America’s adversaries look for any vulnerabilities in our cybersecurity systems to threaten our infrastructure, data, and security. It is crucial that we are ready to defend against any adversaries using this incredibly sophisticated and emerging technology against our country,” Sen. Hassan said in a previous statement.


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Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.