Cryptography—the art of code‐making—has a long history of military and diplomatic applications, dating back to the Babylonians. In World War II, the Allies' feat of breaking the legendary German code Enigma contributed greatly to their final victory. Nowadays, cryptography is becoming increasingly important in commercial applications for electronic business. Sensitive data such as credit card numbers and personal identification numbers (PINs) are routinely transmitted in encrypted form. Quantum mechanics is a new tool for both code‐breakers and code‐makers in their eternal arms race. It has the potential to revolutionize cryptography both by creating perfectly secure codes and by breaking standard encryption schemes.

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