Potential Applications for Quantum Key Distribution

How Quantum Key Distribution can safeguard the hacking of encryption keys

Excerpts and salient points ~

+  Unfortunately, like every great technology, Quantum Computers also bring along negative aspects. The industry is gravely concerned that quantum computers will be able to crack most of today’s encryption that uses “trapdoor” mathematical functions that work easily in one direction but not in the other. That makes encrypting data easy, but decoding it is difficult without the help of a special key.

+  Today’s encryption (secret) keys are highly vulnerable due to many reasons such as weak randomness, advances in CPU power, new attack strategies, the emergence of new algorithms such as Shor’s, which when run on Quantum simulators or Quantum computers will ultimately render much of today’s encryption unsafe. A particular concern is that data encrypted today can be intercepted and stored for decryption by quantum computers in the future.

+  Here are some potential applications of the quantum nature of secret keys to address some of the important problems of the industry:

Quantum safe authentication – A quantum token is used to authenticate a person and to provide access control across the organization.

Secure ‘Data in Transit’ between Enterprise Server and Data Centres – Uncompromised encryption keys generated and distributed between the two entities ensuring the absence of eavesdropping.

Securing ‘Data at Rest’ at the Private Cloud or Public Clouds – Enterprises can generate and use their own unconditionally secure keys to encrypt their data in the cloud ensuring full control of their data.

Secure ATMs – All confidential information such as PIN, etc. from the ATMs is transmitted to the bank, encrypted using QKD.

Security against anti-skimming – Quantum secret is used to encrypt the PIN.

Securing online banking – Replacing TAN with Quantum TAN.

Securing against Cardholder Not Present (CNP) fraud – Keys are not available to an attacker via phishing or keylogging, and the transaction details encrypted via a one-time pad that cannot be retrieved by unauthorized actors.

+  Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) is one such technology that addresses all these challenges. QKD is a key establishment and distribution protocol that creates a shared symmetric key material by using quantum properties of light to transfer information from Alice to Bob in a manner that will highlight any eavesdropping by an adversary. This can be used to derive a key, and the resultant key material can then be used to encrypt plaintext using one-time pad encryption or using AES to provide unconditional security.

Source:  CISO MAG.  Sunil Gupta,  How Quantum Key Distribution can safeguard the hacking of encryption keys…

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