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21 May 2015 Analysis of the secrecy of the running key in quantum encryption channels using coherent states of light
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Abstract
Free-space optical communication channels offer secure links with low probability of interception and detection. Despite their point-to-point topology, additional security features may be required in privacy-critical applications. Encryption can be achieved at the physical layer by using quantized values of photons, which makes exploitation of such quantum communication links extremely difficult. One example of such technology is keyed communication in quantum noise, a novel quantum modulation protocol that offers ultra-secure communication with competitive performance characteristics. Its utilization relies on specific coherent measurements to decrypt the signal. The process of measurements is complicated by the inherent and irreducible quantum noise of coherent states. This problem is different from traditional laser communication with coherent detection; therefore continuous efforts are being made to improve the measurement techniques. Quantum-based encryption systems that use the phase of the signal as the information carrier impose aggressive requirements on the accuracy of the measurements when an unauthorized party attempts intercepting the data stream. Therefore, analysis of the secrecy of the data becomes extremely important. In this paper, we present the results of a study that had a goal of assessment of potential vulnerability of the running key. Basic results of the laboratory measurements are combined with simulation studies and statistical analysis that can be used for both conceptual improvement of the encryption approach and for quantitative comparison of secrecy of different quantum communication protocols.
© (2015) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Vladimir V. Nikulin, David H. Hughes, John Malowicki, and Vijit Bedi "Analysis of the secrecy of the running key in quantum encryption channels using coherent states of light", Proc. SPIE 9500, Quantum Information and Computation XIII, 950009 (21 May 2015); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2182433
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