Quantum cryptography uses quantum mechanics for encrypting and decrypting information. Quantum cryptography solves the key exchange problem faced by non-quantum cryptography, and can theoretically create levels of encryption likely to be impossible to solve using non-quantum classical cryptography methods.
Stephen Wiesner, a scientist working at Columbia University in New York City, is credited with introducing the world to quantum cryptography in 1968 after submitting a paper titled "Conjugate Coding" to the journal IEEE Information Theory. Wiesner's paper was rejected by IEEE Information theory, but would later be published by SIGACT News is 1983. In his Conjugate Coding paper Wiesner successfully demonstrated how to store or transmit two quantum encoded messages. Wiesner showed messages can be encoded using two conjugate observables, such as linear and circular polarized light, in a way that allows either one of the messaged to be received and decoded, but not both messages. Wiesner is also credited with coming up with the concepts of quantum money and quantum conjugate coding.
Origin and Development of Quantum Cryptography | MPIWG
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