An international team of researchers based at the University of Bristol in U.K. has built a new quantum chip that will help secure mobile phone transactions against hacking attempts.
The Financial Times reported Monday that the scientists will apply the technology to create safe communications for mobile phones and computers, which would make online banking and Internet shopping more secure and phones more resistant to hacking. It plans to reveal more of the development at the British Science Festival in Aberdeen, Scotland, this week.
The chip, made from silicon, operates on light and is thousands of times smaller than the glass chips used previously. Jeremy O'Brien, physics professor at Bristol, said in the report that these processors could be integrated into conventional microelectronic circuits within 3 to 5 years.
Antti Niskanen, research leader at Nokia Research Center in Cambridge, added: "Understanding quantum photonics opens exciting prospects for further research into security, sensors, and information processing. Security of personal data, the ability for a device to sense the world around it, and the ability to quickly interpret this information all offer future benefits for mobile device users."
The research was carried out in collaboration with tech companies such as Toshiba, Nokia, and Oclaro, as well as the Heriot-Watt University in Scotland and Delft University in the Netherlands, the report noted.