Feeds

Quantum comms can be made even more secure

Digital signatures using quantum states

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Quantum mechanics can be used to create the “perfect” digital signature, but in practice, it's held back by the technical impossibility of retaining quantum states for more than a few seconds. Now, a group of researchers from the UK, Croatia and Greece is proposing a scheme they say would make quantum digital signatures (QDS) not just feasible, but usable.

The Achilles heel of QDS is that it depends on persistent quantum memory, they say, and this means real-world implementations wouldn't happen for years.

In a paper published in Physical Review Letters and also available at Arxiv, the researchers propose a scheme that allows the distribution of quantum digital signatures, but eliminates the need for quantum memory.

Instead, they say, their QDS works with today's linear optics.

“In a generic QDS protocol, the sender sends pairs of quantum states, quantum signatures, to the multiple recipients. The recipients store the signatures in quantum memory until the sender decides to send a particular message,” they write.

Using quantum states as the signatures ensures authenticity and nonrepudiability of the messages, but since a message might need to be verified years after its creation, current QDS schemes assume there's some way to store the signatures indefinitely – which there isn't.

“This is a serious shortcoming given that state-of-the-art quantum memories cannot achieve coherence times longer than minutes,” they write.

What the researchers propose is that the quantum states representing the signature information be converted to classical information using quantum measurements – and what the users store is the classical information representing the signature.

The researchers also note that the kinds of communication systems already used in commercial quantum key distribution (QKD) schemes could represent a practical way to implement their QDS protocol for experiments.

The paper was authored by Vedran Dunjko, Petros Wallden and Erika Andersson. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.