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Governments Deliberating Over Securing Digital Footprint

Governments look beyond Android and iOS to secure devices

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IT Managers are most prone to cyber crimes and phishing emails. PixabayIT Managers are most prone to cyber crimes and phishing emails. Pixabay

Governments across the world are deliberating over securing their digital footprint and sensitive data from New-Age hackers and an end-to-end, reliable and trustworthy operation system (OS) beyond Android or iOS is top of their minds. Russian government via its national operator Rose Telecom recently acquired 75 per cent of the “Aurora OS” platform built on Finnish firm Jolla’s “Sailfish OS”. Russia with “Aurora OS” want to build a safe digital society with the Aurora OS for devices used across corporates and state-owned companies.

Jolla is also looking to license its platform for domestic OS for some of the countries. Similarly, a Brazilian company “Sikur” has built a highly secure OS and software platform to be scaled across different devices from smartphones, trading stations, industrial IoT, PoS machines, wearables and so forth. The time is ripe for the Indian government to join the bandwagon and look for a secure OS for its operations.

“In the world of geo-political tensions, tech cold war and protectionism, countries such as China, Russia and Brazil are trying to push for an OS which is more controlled and is privacy led to the actors outside of their home countries. The Indian government should also strive to own such secure OS for devices part of its key operations,” Neil Shah, Research Director, Counterpoint Research, told IANS.

Brazil government is already using “Sikur Phones” to make the devices and communication highly secure and private. “We believe HarmonyOS is also a step in that direction to create a ‘national OS’ for China first and then scale it outside the country,” Shah added. Sikur has created a way to provide total security on any application, be it banking, stocks, news, cryptocurrency, wallets or email.

“Now, even WhatsApp runs on SikurOS. We can incorporate widely available apps if they meet SIKUR’s security criteria,” says the company.
On its foundation, the SikurOS does not demand the hassles of VPN links since the connections have several security layers by default.

Russia with “Aurora OS” want to build a safe digital society with the Aurora OS for devices used across corporates and state-owned companies. Pixabay

The upcoming Sikur App Store will make it even more complete, adding the possibility of having more apps with enhanced security. TizenOS from Samsung is also proliferating in TVs, IoT and smartwatches whereas LG is using webOS for TVs, appliances — making the connected devices independent of Google Android, thus limiting its scale to smartphones only. “The aim is to have a secure, independent OS solution and ecosystem to challenge the Google Android and Apple iOS duopoly in smartphones as the top three OS platforms in the world for key computing devices come from the US,’ Shah noted.

In February, Rostelecom rebranded “Sailfish OS” as “Aurora”. Aurora supports all standard functions of a mobile OS: management of calls, contacts and messages, mailing agent, browser, access to media, calendar, camera, gallery, watch and timers, work with documents and others. It also supports functions of remote access to the workplace, including secure access to corporate email, messengers and IT systems.

Also Read: Google’s Android is Undisputed leader of Operating System in Smartphones

The Russian government has plans to switch all state officials to the Sailfish OS, under a project expected to cost nearly $2.4 billion. The government plans to switch around eight million state officials to the operating system of Russian origin by the end of 2021. Sailfish-powered smartphones will also be recommended to municipal administrations at various levels. (IANS)

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Google Builds A Quantum Computer That Is Far Ahead Than Supercomputers

Google has reportedly built a quantum computer that is way ahead than world's top supercomputers in calculation

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One of the main building at Google's headquarters for European operations in Dublin Ireland. Wikimedia Commons

Google has reportedly built a quantum computer that is way ahead than world’s top supercomputers in calculation – solving tasks in nearly three minutes that would otherwise take current supercomputers 10,000 years to achieve.

According to a report in Financial Times on Friday, a Google research paper has claimed the feat, saying “their processor was able to perform a calculation in three minutes and 20 seconds that would take today’s most advanced classical computer, known as Summit (from IBM), approximately 10,000 years”.

“To our knowledge, this experiment marks the first computation that can only be performed on a quantum processor,” wrote the Google researchers.

In March 2018, Google unveiled its 72-qubit quantum computer chip Bristlecone, saying it was “cautiously optimistic that quantum supremacy can be achieved with Bristlecone”.

Not just Google but several tech giants like Microsoft, IBM and Intel have joined the race to build a scalable quantum computer.

Earlier this week, IBM unveiled its quantum computer with 53 qubits.

A quantum computer can solve complex problems that would otherwise take billions of years for today’s computers to solve. This has massive implications for research in health care, energy, environmental systems, smart materials and more.

According to Google, if a quantum processor can be operated with low enough error, it would be able to outperform a classical supercomputer on a well-defined computer science problem, an achievement known as “quantum supremacy”.

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To our knowledge, this experiment marks the first computation that can only be performed on a quantum processor. Pixabay

These random circuits must be large in both number of qubits as well as computational length (depth).

“Although no one has achieved this goal yet, we calculate quantum supremacy can be comfortably demonstrated with 49 qubits, a circuit depth exceeding 40, and a two-qubit error below 0.5 per cent,” Google said recently.

“We believe the experimental demonstration of a quantum processor outperforming a supercomputer would be a watershed moment for our field, and remains one of our key objectives,” it added.

Researchers at Microsoft are also busy writing the software to build a scalable computer that will help humanity unlock solutions to problems in areas such as clean energy, global warming, materials design and much more – including solving the mysteries of our universe.

If all goes well, Microsoft is confident about having one such scalable super machine within the next five years.

ALSO READ: Tech Giant Apple Applies for a US Trademark on ‘Slofie’

Based on quantum bits, the computer will not use classical bits but qubits which are not limited to binary and can have properties of 0 and 1 simultaneously, thus trying every possible number and sequence simultaneously to unlock vast amounts of data.

The current bits in computers store information as either 1 or 0, thus limiting the potential to make sense when faced with gigantic volumes of data.

“We’re looking at a five-year timeframe to build a quantum computer and what we need are roughly 100-200 good qubits with a low-error rate,” Krysta Svore, Principal Research Manager, Microsoft Quantum Computing, recently told IANS. (IANS)