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Improved Online Security for a Tenth of the Cost

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Computer scientists in the United Kingdom are developing a system that would offer a high level of security at one-tenth the cost of existing systems using specialized quantum technology.

The fiber-optics system would offer security to two online users by broadcasting a continuous stream of information around the communication loop. Access to the information would be limited to users who have a secret key. "It is like using background noise to allow two users to share a secret that no one else knows," says University of Hertfordshire professor Bruce Christianson. The fiber-optics system uses a leak-proof error correction-based protocol to ensure integrity.

"Various people have proposed similar ideas in the past, but our system has introduced a novel error correcting scheme, which means we can use cheap fiber-optics technology and make it work at amazingly high transmission rates," Christianson says.

From University of Hertfordshire
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