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In today’s technological world, the information passed through optical fiber networks every second is as valuable as currency, but often the security is not adequate for growing network capabilities and the threats against them.
LANL researchers are helping address these cyber security threats through two recently unveiled technologies.
Jane Nordholt, Richard Hughes, Charles Peterson, and Raymond T. Newell of the Lab’s Applied Modern Physics group have developed unique cyber security technologies based on quantum key distribution that can provide both communications and transmission security: Quantum Smart Card (QKarD) provides communications security; Quantum Enabled Security (QES) provides transmission security. While fully capable of operating independently, these technologies also can operate as one
complete system for encryption and authentication.
The new technologies represent a paradigm shift in practical cryptography. Unlike current cryptography techniques, which rely on the difficulty of mathematical problems to generate security, quantum encryption techniques rely on the laws of quantum mechanics.
By placing cryptography on the solid foundations of physical laws, quantum-key distribution provides encryption that is provably secure versus that which is probably secure.
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