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Booz Allen Hamilton hiring quantum information physicist (clearancejobs.com)
51 points by mcantelon 1569 days ago | hide | past | web | 20 comments | favorite

BAH was hiring in quantum information as early as the late 1990s, if I recall correctly. Certainly they were doing so by the early 2000s. It's not surprising that BAH is interested: the NSA and DARPA have been funding research on quantum computing since the mid-1990s.

(I worked in the field from 1992 through 2008.)

Edit: See, for example, this 2004 article on "Quantum networks: from quantum cryptography to quantum architecture", with several BAH authors, including the lead author: http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=1039117&dl=ACM&coll=DL&CFI... This took a few seconds to find with Google, I wouldn't be surprised to find earlier examples.

Based on the headline, I initially thought it was an announcement, not a job posting, so I tried to think of whose hiring they would bother to announce. My next thought was, "Maybe they're hiring Michael Nielsen?" (I'd forgotten for the moment about the Snowden angle, so I didn't immediately realize you might not be willing to work for them.)

If you are really worried about government or government contractors building quantum computers in secret to break RSA in order to read your email you can just encrypt with either NTRU or McElice schemes which have been around for a while and aren't known to be breakable with an efficient quantum computer.

Of course if you are truly paranoid you might believe that the government knows how to break these schemes as well. In that case I have a great deal on bulk orders of carrier pigeons that might interest you

I just had an intriguing thought. Wouldn't it be interesting/ironic to see BAH made a target of anon hacking, successfully penetrated, and publicly embarrassed further than the Snowden fiasco? I think Feinstein might pop a blood vessel.

I think it would be sad. I wouldn't laugh, even though I find Booz Allen distasteful. Intrusions of this sort are criminal for good reason. In the most likely case, the net effect would be more 18-28 year olds being prosecuted for felonies, while a chorus of message board ghouls cheers more people like them on.

Why? This isn't a case of some shadowy organization actively trying to spy on americans, a la HBGary. BAH had a contract to support netops and hired Snowden. Not exactly the same thing Barr did as CEO.

I'm not advocating or encouraging the hacking (I'd like to think I'm smarter than that). I'm saying for the case of the national discussion happening at the moment regarding government contractors carrying out national security jobs, I would be interested to see the response of folks like Feinstein, who publicly discussed limiting contractor access [1]. If contractors aren't trusted with secrets, the outcome plays right into Assange's theory of the locking down of information and subsequent paralysis of an authoritarian conspiracy [2].

[1] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-14/feinstein-eyes-limi...

[2] http://cryptome.org/0002/ja-conspiracies.pdf

I agree that it would likely yield an interesting discussion. The fact is federal contractors are responsible for almost all cases of espionage in the past 10 years.

Good links too.

BAH had a contract to support netops and hired Snowden.

Ah, the modern version of the Nuremberg defense. "It was in the contract."

Given how misguided Anonymous has proven to be at times in selecting their targets (a drawback of such a loose conglomeration of an organization), so I'd say that this is definitely in the realm of possibility.

BAH has a team of security experts that would shut down Anonymous attacks faster than you can say, "lulz".

That's funny.

Anonymous doesn't work the way you think they work. They hit easy targets, and lack the sophistication to hit anything else. BAH is, I assure you, not an easy target for any hacktivist group.

It just occurred to me: If I were an intelligence agency, or intelligence agency contractor, I would start putting out job opening for all sorts of outlandish shit, just to keep people guessing about what the real capabilities are.

And if no one gets hired for some of these because the capability isn't there, well, we can just say that no applicants had the needed knowledge/skills/abilities.

so the US Gov is now a D-Wave client.. FUN...

So... about that 512 qubit D-Wave in the works... How far are we from breaking RSA?

The world record for quantum factorization is, what, 27?

RSA is more threatened by conventional number theoretic advances than by quantum computers.

They aren't going to break RSA with it.. (they might not realize it yet).. but they are going to train their deep learning ai algorithms at LIGHTNING fast speed, so they can make sense of all of the data they're collecting

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