illegal prime numbersShort Bytes: There are some very certain prime numbers that are illegal. Yes, having them in your possession or sharing them with somebody could get your arrested. The known fact that prime numbers are of utmost importance in the field of cryptography explains the reason behind this. 

What if I told you that there exist few numbers that will get you arrested in America if your write them down or publish them on some website? Well, this isn’t some kind of April Fools’ Day joke and even some casual affair with these number could get you in trouble in States.

If your knowledge extends deep into the waters of security and cryptography, you might be knowing that prime numbers are really important in the field of encryption. Earlier this year in January, cryptographers were elated when a new world’s largest prime number was discovered.

Coming back to our illegal prime numbers, this weirdness deals with the Digital Millenium Copyright Act that prohibits people from circumventing copyright protected measures and dissemination of tools.

In a video, YouTube channel Wendoverproductions has told these complex things in a simpler manner and told about the intricate relation between the prime numbers and cryptography. “There are an infinite number of primes as there is an infinite number of numbers, but it just takes an enormous amount of computing power to find these primes,” the video explains.

As some of these prime numbers could be used to break encryption, the law prohibits the possession of some very specific prime numbers. Back in 1978, before the Digital Millenium Copyright Act was passed, using these numbers, people created illegal copies of movies.

“All the while, individuals were breaking the law not only by copying DVDs, but also by just being in possession of this number,” the video explains.

I’ll leave the rest explanation for the Wendoverproductions and avoid telling you more about those 1,402 illegal prime numbers, obviously.

Also Read: Why Is The Discovery Of New Largest Prime Number A Great News For Encryption?