Professor Sam Braunstein, of the University of York?s Department of Computer Science, and Dr Arun Pati, of the Institute of Physics, Sainik School, Bhubaneswar, India, have established that quantum information cannot be ?hidden? in conventional ways, or in Braunstein?s words, "quantum information can run but it can?t hide."
This result gives a surprising new twist to one of the great mysteries about black holes.
Conventional (classical) information can vanish in two ways, either by moving to another place (e.g. across the internet), or by "hiding", such as in a coded message. The famous Vernam cipher devised in 1917 or its relative the one-time pad cryptographic code are examples of such classical information hiding: the information resides neither in the encoded message nor in the secret key pad used to decipher it - but in correlations between the two.
For decades, physicists believed that both these mechanisms were applicable to quantum information as well, but Professor Braunstein and Dr Pati have demonstrated that if quantum information disappears from one place, it must have moved somewhere else.
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