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WEF warns quantum computing stakeholders may risk ‘physical harm’ from ‘anti-technology’ protesters, calls on big tech, media & govt to immunize ‘misinformation contagion’

Unelected globalists call on corporations & states to collude on controlling quantum computing narrative: perspective

Quantum Processor Illustration. Quantum Computing Theme. 3D Rendered Model of the Processor. Superconducting Chip. Technology Illustrations Collection
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The unelected globalists at the World Economic Forum (WEF) are looking to control the quantum computing narrative by calling on corporations and states to dispel “misinformation and conspiracy theories” about quantum technologies with the fear that quantum computing stakeholders may risk “physical harm” from “anti-technology” protesters.

“Quantum computing stakeholders can seize current opportunities to encourage social media platforms and government public communications to build in mechanisms to safeguard against misinformation contagion” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

With the potential for incredible cross-disciplinary scientific breakthroughs that could also render nearly all forms of digital cryptography obsolete and exacerbate geopolitical tensions, the transformative power of quantum computing is set to impact the lives of just about everyone on the planet in the coming decades.

Not wanting to allow “unwarranted fears” that could arise from private individuals talking about how quantum computing technology could affect their personal lives, the World Economic Forum last week released an insight report called “Quantum Computing Governing Principles,” which heavily emphasized the unelected globalists’ desire to get ahead of the narrative by merging corporation and state communication efforts.

“Quantum science employees or quantum computing organizations may be at risk of reputational or physical harm from protests by anti-technology groups” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

The WEF warns that safeguards may be needed to protect quantum computing stakeholders from “anti-technology” protesters jacked-up on conspiracy theories who would wish to do them physical harm.

According to the report, “Quantum science employees or quantum computing organizations may be at risk of reputational or physical harm from protests by anti-technology groups.”

What’s more, “Protest groups may attempt to misrepresent quantum computing science and technology. Lessons can be learned from other technologies, such as the attacks on 5G mast towers in the UK, the anti-vaccination movement and the attempted bombing of IBM’s nanotechnology laboratory in Zurich in 2010.”

“Protest groups may attempt to misrepresent quantum computing science and technology” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

While the WEF anticipates protests against how quantum technologies are governed, the unelected globalist’s solution is for quantum computing stakeholders to put pressure on social media companies and governments to immunize the “misinformation contagion.”

According to the report, “Quantum computing stakeholders can seize current opportunities to encourage social media platforms and government public communications to build in mechanisms to safeguard against misinformation contagion.”

“Efforts at proper communication […] could have an amplifying beneficial effect, ensuring the general public ‘trust the experts‘ to achieve broader social goals” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

The mantra of the unelected globalist’s strategy to fight alleged quantum computing misinformation is the same as the COVID control narrative — “trust the experts.”

“Efforts at proper communication could favor mutual, trusting discussions between the general public and the scientific field,” the report reads, adding, “this, in turn, could have an amplifying beneficial effect, ensuring the general public ‘trust the experts‘ to achieve broader social goals.”

“Misinformation about quantum computing may create unwarranted fears” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

The WEF report goes above and beyond in expressing its desire to control the quantum computing narrative without giving a single example of the misinformation, myths, or conspiracy theories the unelected globalists intend to debunk.

In the meantime, the unelected globalists will be on the lookout to “reduce the potential harm of new myths and hype” as they arise.

“There is an opportunity to debunk current quantum computing myths and dispel hype, and to put mechanisms in place (such as public awareness campaigns and engagement with trusted news media outlets) to either reduce the potential harm of new myths and hype that may arise in future or prevent their occurrence” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

According to the report, “Misinformation about quantum computing may create unwarranted fears.”

Therefore, “There is an opportunity to debunk current quantum computing myths and dispel hype, and to put mechanisms in place (such as public awareness campaigns and engagement with trusted news media outlets) to either reduce the potential harm of new myths and hype that may arise in future or prevent their occurrence.”

Here, the WEF is acting like a social media platform that only promotes information from pre-selected “trusted news media outlets” while censoring dissenting opinions.

“A data-informed approach would enable nuanced, directed communication and public engagement strategies to help debunk quantum computing myths and potentially mitigate risks that may germinate from misinformation and conspiracy theories” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

Fearing backlash from an “uninformed public,” the unelected globalists seek to flood the communication channels with engagement strategies to help debunk what they consider to be quantum computing myths, misinformation, and conspiracy theories.

“To mediate the risk of uninformed public information campaigns, opportunities to generate data gathered with rigorous social science methodology can be encouraged and supported. A data-informed approach would enable nuanced, directed communication and public engagement strategies to help debunk quantum computing myths and potentially mitigate risks that may germinate from misinformation and conspiracy theories.”

Whereas journalists have historically challenged narratives and have been skeptical of corporation-and-state-directed communication strategies, the the unelected globalists say that the fourth estate should actually be a partner to the narrative.

“Dialogue between journalists and media organizations and quantum computing experts […] would aim to encourage and support responsible media representations of quantum computing, and enable trusted partnerships between experts and the media” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

According to the report, “Public communication about quantum computing should be conducted by trusted experts or informed science communicators with the aim of building and engendering trust in the technology.”

The WEF recommends, “Establish[ing] forums and opportunities for open dialogue between journalists and media organizations and quantum computing experts. This dialogue would aim to encourage and support responsible media representations of quantum computing, and enable trusted partnerships between experts and the media.”

And of course, no WEF agenda would be complete without an economic angle as to how different narratives may affect their bottom line.

From the report, “A lack of public trust in, or understanding of, quantum computing may affect its uptake or funding in some sectors or communities.”

“Another risk is the ability to run powerful data analysis algorithms to forecast, infer or induct unconsented or unauthorized information from datasets containing personal or PII [Personally Identifiable Information] information by combining quantum computers with other technologies such as AI” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

Like the arrival of artificial intelligence, quantum computing carries significant risks to society, especially in the hands of authoritarian regimes and technocrats.

“If the development of quantum computing moves to a few nation states and larger organizations,” the report says, “there is an increased risk that the most socially beneficial use cases, such as combating climate change, will be deprioritized in favor of applications that confer a competitive or geostrategic advantage to a particular group.”

Additionally, “In case of global conflict, if there is a monopoly on the technology, monopoly-holders could decide to shut down their systems and create global restrictions.”

“If there is a monopoly of knowledge of quantum computing hardware residing with only a few corporations and research institutions, this could lead to a power imbalance vis-a-vis national governments (regulators) as well as competitors and the public at large. This could also have negative geopolitical implications,” according to the report.

“With regard to the collection and storage of PII [Personally Identifiable Information], stakeholders should be mindful of the likelihood that enhanced quantum processing may render current data privacy techniques ineffective” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

Apart from the monopolistic and geopolitical risks involved with quantum computing governance, the cybersecurity and privacy risks to individuals and organizations are immense.

Cybersecurity risks in the report include:

  • Attacks may be made on communications by intercepting messages in transit – which are generally exchanged using quantum vulnerable solutions – decrypting them and accessing the content
  • Attacks may be made on data stored in the cloud by breaking currently deployed public-key encryption schemes
  • Validation and authorization mechanisms could break down due to quantum computing, since they rely on existing encryption methods, e.g. it would become possible to break the integrity of digital signatures and entities and enable forgeries and impersonations
  • Destabilization of governance protocols in emerging infrastructures such as blockchain networks relying on proof of work (e.g. Grover’s algorithm providing a potential advantage for mining) or other consensus mechanisms (by attacking the authentication layer) could occur
  • Malicious development of quantum computing capabilities can happen “in the dark”, enabling attacks that cannot be immediately detected
  • Without quantum-resistant security solutions all regulations and laws regarding privacy, data management etc. would be impossible to uphold
  • An unharmonized transition to a quantum secure world could lead to a “balkanization” of digital infrastructures due to, for example, incompatible standards
  • Advances in quantum error-correction technology could reach a “breaking point”, at which point scaling up the quantum memory necessary to mount quantum attacks suddenly becomes much easier
  • Quantum superposition attacks might pose an immediate threat to certain cryptographic solutions traditionally considered resilient to such attacks, such as hash functions or block ciphers

“The technology could be used by authoritarian regimes or powerful organizations to expand surveillance, encroach on privacy or violate civil liberties” — WEF ‘Quantum Computing Governing Principles,’ 2022

Privacy risks include:

  • There is a risk of hacking of data in transit and data stored containing personal data or PII that is not protected with quantum-secure
    cryptography by exploiting cyberthreats posed by quantum computers
  • Another risk is the ability to run powerful data analysis algorithms to forecast, infer or induct unconsented or unauthorized information from datasets containing personal or PII information by combining quantum computers with other technologies such as AI
  • The technology could be used by authoritarian regimes or powerful organizations to expand surveillance, encroach on privacy or violate civil liberties.

Quantum computing, which will blow classical computing out of the water in terms of speed and efficiency, has the potential to transform all of society for good or ill.

“We are no longer mysterious souls; we are now hackable animals” — Yuval Harari, 2020

Computing power is one factor in historian Yuval Harari’s “Danger Formula” for hacking humans beings, which means whomever controls the technology and has access to your most intimate health data can know more about you than you know about yourself.

“We humans should get used to the idea that we are no longer mysterious souls; we are now hackable animals,” Harari said at the WEF meeting in Davos in 2020.

“The power to hack human beings can of course be used for good purposes like provided much better healthcare, but if this power falls into the hands of a 21st Century Stalin, the result will be the worst totalitarian regime in human history, and we already have a number of applicants for the job of 21st Century Stalin,” he added.

“Biological knowledge multiplied by Computing power multiplied by Data equals the Ability to Hack Humans” — Yuval Harari, 2020

hackable humans
Yuval Harari gives his ‘Danger Formula’ for hacking humans at WEF 2020

“With quantum computers we should be able to probe more deeply into the properties of complex molecules and exotic materials, and also to explore fundamental physics in new ways, for example by simulating the properties of elementary particles, or the quantum behavior of a black hole, or the evolution of the universe right after the big bang” — Dr. John Preskill, 2017

On a more positive note, Dr. John Preskill, theoretical physicist at CalTech, said in 2017, “For a physicist like me, what is really exciting about quantum computing is that we have good reason to believe that a quantum computer would be able to efficiently simulate any process that occurs in Nature.

“With quantum computers we should be able to probe more deeply into the properties of complex molecules and exotic materials, and also to explore fundamental physics in new ways, for example by simulating the properties of elementary particles, or the quantum behavior of a black hole, or the evolution of the universe right after the big bang.”

While quantum computing promises to open the doors to incredible scientific breakthroughs that can truly benefit humanity, it can also be weaponized against society.

The unelected globalists at the WEF know the risks, and so they are calling on big tech, the corporate media, and governments around the world to help control the narrative — once again merging corporation and state for “the greater good.”

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Tim Hinchliffe
The Sociable editor Tim Hinchliffe covers tech and society, with perspectives on public and private policies proposed by governments, unelected globalists, think tanks, big tech companies, defense departments, and intelligence agencies. Previously, Tim was a reporter for the Ghanaian Chronicle in West Africa and an editor at Colombia Reports in South America. These days, he is only responsible for articles he writes and publishes in his own name. tim@sociable.co