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Secure Video Conferencing via Quantum Cryptography

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the hello-a77ghlfiyu-82md022x1x-bye dept.

163

Roland Piquepaille writes "If you use a webcam to talk with your mom, this tool is not for you. But if you're working for a company and that you have to routinely discuss about sensitive future projects or the possible acquisition of another company, you need more security, and this new video conferencing system based on quantum cryptography is a tool you need. According to this article from Nature, researchers from Toshiba have developed a system which can generate 100 quantum 'keys' every second, fast enough to protect every frame in a video exchange. This technology, which today is working over a distance of about 120 kilometers, could become commercially available within two years at an initial cost of $20,000. This overview contains more details and references."

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163 comments

The Star Wars Kid could have used this (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415157)

Maybe this "tool" isn't for having a chat with mom, but if you plan on making a Star Wars like lightsaber duel with a broom, make sure to use this.

Re:The Star Wars Kid could have used this (1)

chucks86 (799149) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416271)

That's like the geek mating dance...

Montreal? (0, Troll)

montreal!hahahahah (880120) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415160)

hahhahahaha

Oh, and Roland Eats Cock.

Hey Roland, I'm violating your copyright! SUCK IT! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415162)


If you use a webcam to talk with your mom, this tool is not for you. But if you're working for a company and that you have to routinely discuss about sensitive future projects or the possible acquisition of another company, you need more security, and this new video conferencing system based on quantum cryptography is a tool you need. According to this article [nature.com] from Nature, researchers from Toshiba have developed a system which can generate 100 quantum 'keys' every second, fast enough to protect every frame in a video exchange. This technology, which today is working over a distance of about 120 kilometers, could become commercially available within two years at an initial cost of $20,000. Read more...


Here is the introduction from Nature.


Scientists from Toshiba's Cambridge Research Laboratory [toshiba-europe.com] unveiled their invention to business leaders and government officials at Britain's Department of Trade and Industry in London on 27 April.


Their system is capable of generating 100 quantum 'keys' every second. This is fast enough for every individual frame of video to be protected by its own encryption. "This makes the system highly secure," says Andrew Shields, who leads the Cambridge team. "It would take an enormous computational resource to crack this frame by frame."

Of course, today's videoconferencing tools using conventional encryption are already pretty secure. But if the NSA wants to check your conversation, I betit can. With quantum cryptography, this is a different story.


Quantum cryptography promises to stop such eavesdroppers. The system works by first establishing a 'key' that provides instructions on how to decode an incoming message. This key is built into the quantum state of photons. Intercepting a message breaks the key and alerts the sender and intended recipient to the security breach, because the very act of observing a quantum state changes it.

The Quantum Information Group [toshiba-europe.com] at Toshiba gives more details on this subject on this page about Security from Eavesdropping [toshiba-europe.com] . Below is a diagram illustrating the concept (Credit: Toshiba's Cambridge Research Laboratory).



Using single photons to carry the bit material for the key prevents undetected eavesdropping. Because each bit is carried by a single photon, it is not possible for a hacker to tap in and remove part of the signal, as shown in the illustration. Single photons do not split, so if the hacker (Eve) measures the photons on the fibre, they will not reach the intended recipient (Bob). Only the photons that arrive at Bob are used to form the key, so Eve cannot gain any useful information by this crude 'tapping' attack.


The first commercial applications of quantum cryptography are now about one year old. However, this new system offers new levels of performances, according to Nature.


Unlike previous systems, which become unreliable when they heat up, this device can run continuously for more than four weeks, says Shields. The quantum information can only go so far before being corrupted by random interactions with surrounding material, however. "We've shown this can work over 120 kilometres of fibre," says Shields.

Toshiba has already built a Quantum Cryptography Prototype [toshiba-europe.com] . And the research work has been published by Applied Physics Letters (Vol. 84, Issue 19, Pages 3762-3864, May 10, 2004) under the title "Quantum key distribution over 122 km of standard telecom fiber." Here is a link to the abstract [doi.org] .


We report a demonstration of quantum key distribution over a standard telecom fiber exceeding 100 km in length. Through careful optimization of the interferometer and single photon detector, we achieve a quantum bit error ratio of 8.9% for a 122 km link, allowing a secure shared key to be formed after error correction and privacy amplification. Key formation rates of up to 1.9 kbit/s are achieved depending upon fiber length. We discuss the factors limiting the maximum fiber length in quantum cryptography.


Finally, here is a link to the full paper [toshiba-europe.com] (PDF format, 14 pages, 68 KB).


Sources: Mark Peplow, Nature, April 28, 2005; Toshiba's Cambridge Research Laboratory website

MOD PARENT UP!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415180)

Stop giving Roland free advertising revenue, read it in the parent post instead!

Re:MOD PARENT UP!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415259)

Here's an idea, if you are so interested in reading it, read it off Roland's site, if you don't want to support Roland, DON'T FUCKING READ IT! You people are hypocrites, you do the same thing you claim Roland does and expect people to take you seriously.

Re:MOD PARENT UP!! (1)

heauxmeaux (869966) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415271)

Roland?

Oh, BTW...aren't you actually Jeff Gannon? [blogspot.com]

Re:MOD PARENT UP!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415277)

We object to Roland using Slashdot, a free service, to generate ad revenue for his website, which is nothing more than a compilation of OTHER news sites.

Re:MOD PARENT UP!! (0)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415303)

Then object in a legal manner and don't read his articles at all.

Oh...my... the evil is spreading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415494)

So you are saying that if we don't want to support "Roland", then we must NOT F******* READ IT?

Egads, and does that mean that whoever posted Roland's article in this forum is...evil!

God help us all! First, the evil begins as a URL hyperlinked offsite to a Roland Piquepaille website, then it slowly migrates into the story with little reference offsite, then...
It spreads directly into the slashdot forum!

PARENT POST IS "Roland Piquepaille" concealing his story as a vigilante justice troll! Wait, uhm: worst. troll. ever. yeah, the worst. Who modded up this shit-blogger? Mod that fucker down. It's not Interesting and Insightful. Mod that troll down to the burning flames of Katz.

MOD PARENT UP! (1)

Asshat Canada (804093) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415183)

Roland is a grab-ass Karma slut. How's the Roland Ass, Timothy?

SLASHDOT IS RUNNED BY CORRUPT LIARS! MOD P. UP! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415324)

Slashdot is exhibiting yet another example of hyprocracy, they'll whine about Microsoft "hiring" bloggers to promote products, yet ALL THE WHILE SLASHDOT DOES THE SAME!!! Roland's useless blog is full of plagarism and idiocy, yet since Roland pays off Slashdot to whore his links, SLASHDOT IS AS GUILTY AS MICROSOFT!!!

Roland Again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415165)

Does this guy have a day job? Sheesh.

He submits /. stories to get hits for his blog (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415892)

Thus generating ad revenue.

Methinks he must be sucking Timothy off...

excellent (1)

SirSlud (67381) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415170)

The scientific arms race between rebels and agents continues!

Re:excellent (2, Interesting)

_Sharp'r_ (649297) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415222)

I'm still trying to figure out why anyone would want to spend the cash on this when they could just tunnel through SSH, use a VPN, etc... etc...

Sure, it might use slightly more bandwidth than this, but come on, for that price....

Re:excellent (1)

SirSlud (67381) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415243)

Man, its not the quality of your network, its how fucking sexy the hardware is!

Re:excellent (2, Informative)

Darkman, Walkin Dude (707389) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415510)

Three words: Remote Military Applications. The benefits of this technology to the military stretch far beyond normal and even ultra secret communications; they could remotely control battle robots, or even properly equipped tanks, without fear of interference or subversion. This is especially interesting considering the latest drones in use by the US military.

You can find a lot of people to fight your wars, but they are expensive to train, unreliable, and to gain experience they need to risk serious injury or death. On the other hand, you can mass produce battle robots to extremely precise specifications, and control them safely from a command bunker many kilometers away with this technology.

Re:excellent (3, Insightful)

DoctorVic (716683) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415553)

While that sounds all fine and dandy, if I understand this technology, it is not wireless. I am sure that the military could come up with some amazingly devious ideas with this, but I do not think this would be one. How could you transmit a stream of photons bearing the encryption to a remote location out of line of sight without some type of optical cable and maintain an error rate of around 9%? I am sure they have some other shit worked up for that!!!

Re:excellent (1)

Bender0x7D1 (536254) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416332)

First, I agree with you that good crypto is required for the control and data channels of a remote military device, such as a drone. However, there are some far more important considerations...

First, you want to prevent the enemy from being able to jam your communications. This means you want some frequency hopping built in to your communications. This increases the amount of power needed by the enemy jammer by an amount equal to:

(hopping bandwidth)/(signal bandwidth)

The GPS system has a signal bandwidth of 50bits/sec and 10Mb/sec hopping bandwidth. If it would require 10 Watts of power to jam this signal without frequency hopping, because of the frequency hopping it would require 2 megawatts (assuming a barrage jammer). Which just ASKS for a high-speed antiradiation missile (HARM) to come calling.
Also, you don't want the enemy to detect the signals coming from your remote military device or THEY will fire their own HARM at it, and a drone doesn't move as fast as HARM. This calls for some application of spread spectrum so the signal can be hidden in the environmental noise. This is also why the drones use satellite communications - the signals are directed upwards, and presumably away, from any enemies listening for the signal, and a satellite is much harder to hit than a drone.

While crypto would be important, it is also VERY simple to preload the drone with the appropriate keys that will be used for the duration of its mission. This is how some military radios work currently. Before the patrol goes out, one of the comm guys comes over with their little green box and plugs it into the radio until it beeps and the radio is set for a couple of days.

I do disagree with you on the battle robots though. Why produce robots when for a couple of hot meals a day and a few hundred bucks a month you can have a person do the fighting? Overall they are much cheaper than producing battle robots, and are much more adaptable in combat situations. (OK - SkyNet would be more adaptable, but it isn't around yet.) Also, a well-trained infantryman can take out pretty much anything if they are sneaky about it. That's why tanks have Bradleys with them, and the Bradleys have infantry in them - to make sure no one gets really close to a tank. Finally, a person is required to make repairs. If a tank throws a track, someone has to get out and put it back on, otherwise someone is going to call artillery in and destroy the tank.

Of course, I would love to see powered armor/mechs on the battlefield, but I don't think they are coming any time soon.

Bah (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415174)

Security is overrated.

Not very cost effective, yet (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415176)

..which today is working over a distance of about 120 kilometers, could become commercially available within two years at an initial cost of $20,000.
$20,000 is a lot more than what it costs to deliver a hard disk full of random numbers for use as a One Time Pad.

But I guess you could get the best of both worlds, by storing your OTP on Quantum hard disks. Nyuk, nyuk.

Hey, would you accept 20K... (1)

PaulBu (473180) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416551)

To REALLY try to run away from the "bad guys" who would tremendously enjoy making a couple of extra holes in your head???

I'd guess it can cost much more to SECURELY deliver anything from point A to point B...

Paul B.

THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415178)

I think most of you are aware of the controversy surrounding regular Slashdot article submitter Roland Piquepaille. For those of you who don't know, please allow me to bring forth all the facts. Roland Piquepaille has an online journal (I refuse to use the word "blog") located at http://www.primidi.com/ [primidi.com] . It is titled "Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends". It consists almost entirely of content, both text and pictures, taken from reputable news websites and online technical journals. He does give credit to the other websites, but it wasn't always so. Only after many complaints were raised by the Slashdot readership did he start giving credit where credit was due. However, this is not what the controversy is about.

Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends serves online advertisements through a service called Blogads, located at www.blogads.com. Blogads is not your traditional online advertiser; rather than base payments on click-throughs, Blogads pays a flat fee based on the level of traffic your online journal generates. This way Blogads can guarantee that an advertisement on a particular online journal will reach a particular number of users. So advertisements on high traffic online journals are appropriately more expensive to buy, but the advertisement is guaranteed to be seen by a large amount of people. This, in turn, encourages people like Roland Piquepaille to try their best to increase traffic to their journals in order to increase the going rates for advertisements on their web pages. But advertisers do have some flexibility. Blogads serves two classes of advertisements. The premium ad space that is seen at the top of the web page by all viewers is reserved for "Special Advertisers"; it holds only one advertisement. The secondary ad space is located near the bottom half of the page, so that the user must scroll down the window to see it. This space can contain up to four advertisements and is reserved for regular advertisers, or just "Advertisers".

Before we talk about money, let's talk about the service that Roland Piquepaille provides in his journal. He goes out and looks for interesting articles about new and emerging technologies. He provides a very brief overview of the articles, then copies a few choice paragraphs and the occasional picture from each article and puts them up on his web page. Finally, he adds a minimal amount of original content between the copied-and-pasted text in an effort to make the journal entry coherent and appear to add value to the original articles. Nothing more, nothing less.

Now let's talk about money. Visit BlogAds to check the following facts for yourself. As of today, December XX 2004, the going rate for the premium advertisement space on Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends is $375 for one month. One of the four standard advertisements costs $150 for one month. So, the maximum advertising space brings in $375 x 1 + $150 x 4 = $975 for one month. Obviously not all $975 will go directly to Roland Piquepaille, as Blogads gets a portion of that as a service fee, but he will receive the majority of it. According to the FAQ, Blogads takes 20%. So Roland Piquepaille gets 80% of $975, a maximum of $780 each month. www.primidi.com is hosted by clara.net (look it up at Network Solutions ). Browsing clara.net's hosting solutions, the most expensive hosting service is their Clarahost Advanced ( link ) priced at £69.99 GBP. This is roughly, at the time of this writing, $130 USD. Assuming Roland Piquepaille pays for the Clarahost Advanced hosting service, he is out $130 leaving him with a maximum net profit of $650 each month. Keeping your website registered with Network Solutions cost $34.99 per year, or about $3 per month. This leaves Roland Piquepaille with $647 each month. He may pay for additional services related to his online journal, but I was unable to find any evidence of this.

All of the above are cold, hard, verifiable facts, except where stated otherwise. Now I will give you my personal opinion.

It appears that every single article submitted to Slashdot by Roland Piquepaille is accepted, and he submits multiple articles each month. As of today, it is clear that ten articles were accepted in October, six in November, and four in December (so far). See his page for yourself. Some generate lots of discussion; others very little. What is clear is that, on a whole, this generates a lot of traffic for Roland Piquepaille. Just over 150000 hits each month according to Blogads. And the higher the traffic, the higher the advertisement rates Roland Piquepaille can charge. So, why do the Slashdot editors accept every single story from Roland Piquepaille? Is the content of his journal interesting and insightful? Of course it is, but not by Roland Piquepaille's doing. The actual content of his journal is ripped from the real articles, but at least he gives them credit now. Does the content of his journal bring about energitic discussion from the Slashdot readership? Yes, because the original articles from which he got his content are well written and researched and full of details.

So you may be asking, "What is so controversial about this?" Well, in almost every single article submitted by Roland Piquepaille, Slashdot readers complain that Roland Piquepaille is simply plaigarizing the original articles and that rather than linking to Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends on the front page of Slashdot (guaranteeing a large amount of traffic for him), Slashdot should instead link to the original articles. In essence, avoid going through the middle man (and making money for him!). The Slashdot readership that can see through Roland Piquepaille's farce objects on the basis that he stands to make a generous amount of money by doing very little work and instead piggy-backing on the hard work of other professional writers. Others argue that he is providing us with a service and should not be ashamed to want to get paid for it. But exactly what service is he providing us with? He copies-and-pastes the meat of his journal entries from professional and academic journals and news magazines and submits about seven or eight of these "articles" to Slashdot each month. Is this "service" worth up to $647 a month? Or, does each "article" represent up to $80 of work?

The real question is, why does Slashdot continue to accept every single one of his submissions when many of the readers see through the scam and whole-heartedly object to what he is doing? Maybe the Slashdot editors don't have much journalistic integrity. Haha, just kidding. We all know they wouldn't know integrity if it bitch-slapped a disobediant user talking about Slashcode internals or shut down www.censorware.org [google.com] in a temper tantrum. Anyway, what incentive would Slashdot editors have to link to lame rehashes of original and insightful technology articles? What incentive would Roland Piquepaille have to constantly seek these tech articles and rehash them into lame journal entires and submit them to Slashdot? I submit to you, the Slashdot reader, that the incentive for each is one and the same. Now that you have been informed of the facts of the situation, you can make your own decision.

THE TRUTH ABOUT SLASHDOT!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415351)

And all the above is different from Slashdot how?

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (1)

ninji (703783) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415403)

OH Comeeee onnnn man..
You think any of the other sites slashdot links to dont collect advertising revenues?

Even if its 'not a worthwhile service' Its NOT costing you anything, its information being shared, even if hes doing it for profit it's not at the readers expense.

Why should slashdot not accept GOOD submissions just becuase someones collect advertising revenues?
Its not Hurting the /. community, it's contributing to it no matter how you look at it.

Until your post I hadn't heard of or noticed anything about roland, but its clear by what you have to say that
The only problem I see is if hes directly plagerizing... Context etc, even if naming souces its still bad practice, but like you said, that's not what this is about.

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (-1, Troll)

ubrgeek (679399) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415422)

While all of this is interesting, what is more relevant is the complete lack of proper English in the post. I almost needed BF to understand it.

THE TRUTH ABOUT SLASHDOT (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415451)

Can you repeat your analysis but for Slashdot? How much does it cost for an OSDN ad on Slashdot, such as the many Microsoft ads? How much does OSDN generate from these ads? How much goes towards bandwidth?

Of course Slashdot is different, right? Rather than the work that Roland does to take snippets of various articles and provide graphics, the Slashdot editors do no work at all -- they simply post the submissions as they receive them and don't even correct basic spelling/grammar mistakes. Yet they continue to reap the rewards from advertisers such as Microsoft, which many of the readers wholeheartedly object to.

Face it -- you're jealous. You're a loser in your mother's basement and you don't get enough attention, so you piss and moan when someone else gets it. You can't stand the fact that someone else with a French-sounding name (after all, Bush claimed the French were accomplices in 9/11 or some other knee-jerk thing, right?) has done something interesting and makes a few bucks from it despite the fact that all the other nameless corporations who have advertising sponsored sites do the exact same thing. Every website out there exists because they get paid from advertising dollars.

Grow up!

What about PhysOrg? (1)

argent (18001) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415484)

The site that I see showing up in /. over and over again that's just copies of press releases elsewhere on the net is PhysOrg. How much are they getting from /. eyeballs? How many slashleeches are there?

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (5, Informative)

benjamin_pont (839499) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415486)

How does this kind of thing happen? Just curious.

benjamin_pont's Recent Submissions

Title
Quantum leap in secure web video

Datestamp
Friday April 29, @02:09PM Rejected

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415998)

isn't it obvious? You're not named Roland Piequepaille.

Mod parent DOWN (1)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415511)

This is just spam. He has copied and pasted this form post. As is shown by today's date he used.

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415523)

You know, if you really find this guy annoying, there is contact information so you can tell him about it:

<A HREF="http://www.primidi.com/personalinfo/contactm e.html">http://www.primidi.com/personalinfo/contac tme.html</A>

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415679)

you know, people pay for Readers Digest. I say, If the man has an audence let him do his thing.

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (1)

Yotsuya (4378) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415686)

You say this and yet, the current slashdot submission actually links ot the original article and adds a link to his (Roland Piquaille's) own overview at his online journal.
In fact, it pretty much looks like you just copy and pasted this comment from a previous comment, isn't it?

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (1)

bcrowell (177657) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415696)

We all know they wouldn't know integrity if it bitch-slapped a disobediant user talking about Slashcode internals or shut down www.censorware.org [google.com] in a temper tantrum.
Well, the censorware.org story is disturbing, but it isn't the Slashdot organization that did that, it was someone who also happens to work for Slashdot. And I don't really understand what you mean about Slashcode internals. It's open-source, right? Can you give some info to back up the innuendo?

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415856)

You are a moron.

Bottom line: Kickbacks Or Blackmail.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12416427)

With a dash of cronyism to boot. What else could be the reason/cause behind the info contained in the parent post?

Paul Graham describes in rather vivid detail [paulgraham.com] what happens to the media when it is 'seduced' by PR firms. Imagine how threadbare Slashdot would be if you strip away all the PR-oriented news stories here....

This reporter's account [zpedia.org] proves that big business '0wns' the mass media at large. No wonder people are flocking to blogs for real news and commentary--not PR fodder....

Re:THE TRUTH ABOUT ROLAND PIQUEPAILLE (1)

ramblin billy (856838) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416439)


Well, at the least that explains the "Suck It" post. Although I can see differing opinions existing regarding this practice, I don't believe the parent is a troll. Whatever I decide about Piquepaille, this is the first I've heard about him, and I find the information to be of value. I personally don't have a problem with someone else paying this guy. I doubt many /.ers SEE the ads, much less read them. If the assertions that Piquepaille used to copy without giving credit and has changed his ways are true, then /. can claim a positive influence.

As for the complaints about the /. editors - don't look a gift horse in the mouth! I don't subscribe and as far as I'm concerned that limits my right to complain to approximately zero. The ONLY valid way to express my opinion is to choose not to use the service. It's not difficult to bypass stories I'm not interested in viewing - and I may decide to pass on future Piquepaille stories. As a general policy I'm very open minded toward funding models that provide free content. Besides, I can think of a lot worse articles than this if I really want to bitch.

billy - there's no such thing as a free pipe

TOMATO (1)

cmdr_shithead (527909) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415181)

goat brain

Not for webcam chatting with your mom... (1)

isny (681711) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415182)

Unless you're Bill Gates.

Re:Not for webcam chatting with your mom... (1)

mkw87 (860289) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415269)

it says not for webcam chatting with "your mom", but does that mean my mom? because i know when i webcam chat with your mom, i would prefer people not be watching.....it could affect my performance

Re:Not for webcam chatting with your mom... (1)

rapidweather (567364) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415336)

Sounds like something out of a spy movie.
But, eventually, if you are somewhere, talking and being seen by a camera, "they" will listen in on you, before your data enters the webcam. You'll have to move around, and take the $20,000 device with you. They'll still find you. Spy stuff.
Consider the Alantic Wall. [versatel.nl]

Didn't stop the Allies.

Damnit Roland! (-1, Troll)

DarkHelmet (120004) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415187)

I'm becoming cynical.

I've come to realize that everything on slashdot seems to be either slashvertisement, Microsoft Bashing, Google Glorifying, and stuff that should otherwise be on Bash.org.

Now on that slashvertising bit... I guess I'm a whore too. Who's looking for some hosting / design / programming work done? </sarcasm>

MPAA has got to be into this... (maybe?) (0)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415207)

How long before this in some ways is integrated with those digital projectors in the theaters?

Not only the company (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415209)

But you can cheat on your spouse as well!!

Not that the internet has such nefarious uses!

ah.. (4, Funny)

Keruo (771880) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415218)

video conferencing.. the politically correct way to say, streaming porn

Re:ah.. (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415229)

Nobody cares what kind of porn you're watching. In fact, we'd really rather not know!

Re:ah.. (1)

maotx (765127) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415246)

video conferencing.. the politically correct way to say, streaming porn

Ever see that Sony commercial? [bordergate...otocol.net]

Re:ah.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415387)

As long as it isn't golden streaming porn, sure whatever.

First buyer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415226)

Someone please sign up Paris Hilton for this...or not...nevermind...

Great til machine/user is virused/wormed/phished (3, Insightful)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415266)

New encryption tools are cool, but they only secure the network. The end-terminals (and end-users) are still insecure. Holes in the OS, clicking on the wrong email, etc. can compromise one of the machines. And if either party likes chocolate, then we know that we can get the keys to crypto just by offering a tasty morsel.

Security is only as strong as its weakest link. This invention ensures that the network is not the weakest link. Its a step in the right direction, but other components are still pretty vulnerable.

Re:Great til machine/user is virused/wormed/phishe (1)

CamilaAcolide (880871) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415541)

How dare you IMPLY Longhorn is not secure?

Just becase they can (2, Insightful)

eskwayrd (575069) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415282)

Interesting. Quantum cryptography is supposed to be 'hack proof'. So, why the need for 100 keys per second? One key at the start of the stream should be enough. If your video gets scrambled, it tells you that you have an infrastructure problem, or someone is actively trying to hack into your stream. Either way, continuing the conversation seems kinda moot.

Perhaps this is a 'just because we can' technology which ignores the 'should we?' question. (or, I lack the vision to see how this is useful :)

Re:Just becase they can (1)

erlenic (95003) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415916)

Quantum Encryption is a misnomer in this case. It's really quantum key exchange. Normal one-time pads require that the parties exchange keys in a secure method. This means meeting beforehand. QE allows two parties to exchange one time keys in a manner that cannot be intercepted, meaning they can use one-time pads without having to meet beforehand.

Re:Just becase they can (2, Interesting)

ericpi (780324) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415963)

So, why the need for 100 keys per second? One key at the start of the stream should be enough.

If the quantum channel were fast enough, I'm sure they'd want to use it to send the video directly. Since it isn't fast enough, they're doing the next best thing: Send the encrypted video over traditional (possibly hackable) channels, then send the keys 'securely' using quantum tech.

Rotating the key for every 1/100 sec minimizes the damage in case some of the video is decrypted: the hacker would only be able to recover one frame, rather than the whole video. Probably also makes decryption attempts less desireable in the first place

Re:Just becase they can (1)

erlenic (95003) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415995)

I forget the exact details of how QE works, but basically about half of the bits you send over the QE link are unrecoverable, making it unusable for exchanging actual data. I've explained the basic idea better in other posts in this thread, and I'm sure someone more knowledgable than myself will explain the actual quantum link somewhere in here.

Re:Just becase they can (1)

Sancho (17056) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416453)

Actually, in the case of quantum key exchange, the whole point is that you can tell if someone has eavesdropped on your quantum channel and thus discard that bit of the key and resend something new.

I've always wondered if this is susceptible to a DoS attack, though.

Bandwidth (2, Interesting)

514CK3R (875865) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415289)

Now we all get to suffer the bandwidth consequences of the paranoid's video conferencing. The packets screaming over UUNet's backbone will be prohibitive if only a handful (per capita) of streaming video apps used this technology. I guess it would push providers to put OC48's in our neighborhoods though.

Limitations (4, Interesting)

Bifurcati (699683) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415290)

It should be pointed out that at the moment this technology is limited to sites linked by a fibre optic cable along which the entangled photons (which ultimately form the key) are sent. They claim that it can work over a 120km section.

For this to be really useful, you would need to be able to send the photons via satellite, something which is hard as the interaction with the environment along the way can destroy the entangled state. This would probably be interpreted the same as eavesdropping, further muddling the water. Physicists are indeed trying to get this to work, but it may take some time.

Re:Limitations (2, Insightful)

js7a (579872) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415977)

If you've got a point-to-point fiber optic cable, then why would you need encryption?

Is Roland a script ? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415302)


because his "articles" sure read like them, check out a google search on this phrase
This overview contains more details and references [google.com]

perhaps Roland should spend his time and get a proper job (or perhaps nobody will employ him) and actually contribute something new to the internet instead of just leeching from others hard work.

Re:Is Roland a script ? (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415584)

"perhaps Roland should spend his time and get a proper job (or perhaps nobody will employ him) and actually contribute something new to the internet instead of just leeching from others hard work."

It would help you guys would stop adding to the post count for his stories by bitching about him. I wonder how many extra Slashdot ads are served when he posts a story.

Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (5, Insightful)

goldspider (445116) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415327)

Yes, offtopic, I know. Moving on.

There are a lot of us here who object to Roland Piquepaille's well-documented practice of using Slashdot to direct readers to his site and thereby generate ad revenue for himself.

Roland Piquepaille contributes none of his own work (it's ALL derivative of others' efforts), and Slashdot is more than willing to sell their readers out to this character.

So the next time a Roland Piquepaille-submitted story comes up, don't read it. Don't post replies. Don't even acknowledge that the story is there.

It's time we send Slashdot the message that we don't like being taken advantage of in this manner.

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (4, Insightful)

Quixote (154172) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415503)

I keep seeing the same sort of responses to Roland's stories, and have finally begun to wonder: why doesn't Slashdot stop posting his stories? Will someone at Slashdot address the readers' concerns? It is about time that an official answer came from Slashdot central about their relationship with Roland. I find it hard to believe that each and every story of his gets accepted, while the rest of us have a much less success rate.

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415667)

I find it hard to believe that each and every story of his gets accepted...

Every single one? Are you sure about that?

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (1)

DarkHelmet (120004) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415678)

I wonder what would happen if someone submitted a story about Roland to kuro5hin [kuro5hin.org] , and got enough votes to make it on the front page.

The problem right now is that complaints about him end up only in the comments. Maybe if there's enough external attention, the powers at VA might reconsider their policies.

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (1)

nate nice (672391) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415513)

"It's time we send Slashdot the message that we don't like being taken advantage of in this manner."

How are you being taken advantage of? He, like this site and numerous others, gather news they find interesting and aggregate it.

"Roland Piquepaille contributes none of his own work (it's ALL derivative of others' efforts), and Slashdot is more than willing to sell their readers out to this character."

Again, see here [slashdot.org]

I've heard he used to never document who he got his information from which is wrong, but so long as he is documenting this now, I don't see a problem with it. He gathers information and posts it to slashdot who in turn accepts it. He makes money, slashdot makes money and the readership gets amused for a little while. This guys not doing anything morally or ethically wrong.

Like anyone on Slashdot RTFA anyways. :)

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (1)

jdgeorge (18767) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415758)

He gathers information and posts it to slashdot who in turn accepts it. He makes money, slashdot makes money and the readership gets amused for a little while. This guys not doing anything morally or ethically wrong.

True enough; Roland is certainly not doing anything wrong (seriously).

Nor is Slashdot doing anything wrong by transparently funding Roland's work-free lifestyle through it's immediate publication of anything Roland submits.

I've come around on this. It's not as is anyone seriously considers Slashdot a "news medium"; it's just a manual content aggregator with a popular comment system. The last things we expect from Slashdot are "editorial control" and "journalistic integrity". Think about it: How many duplicate articles can you think of just in the past month? Come on, you can think of more than that.... In any case, you get the point. Slashdot is not even remotely about Fair and Balanced (ahem) reporting.

Heck, I don't mind advertisers funding a lazy blogger's lifestyle; I wish I had a deal like that....

Hmmm, note to self:
1.Change name to Roland Piquepaille
2. Create advertising-supported blog based recycled news
3. Submit to Slashdot
4. Profit!

How can Roland have any +ve Karma? (2, Insightful)

weighn (578357) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415588)

look at the ratings on his comments [slashdot.org] .

Come on slashdot people -- its obvious that none of us like this parasitic-poster.

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (4, Interesting)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415633)

Yes, perhaps we should start moving to other sources where we can get some fresh writing and not be taken advantage of. Perhaps SecurityFocus would be a good source. Here's the first paragraph of their article titled Quantum crypto moves out of the lab [securityfocus.com] :
"Quantum cryptography - long the stuff of cyberpunk novels and hi-tech spy stories - is leaving the laboratory and making its way into commercial markets. A briefing session at the UK's Department of Trade and Industry on Wednesday featured demonstrations of working quantum key exchange systems by QinetiQ, Toshiba Cambridge and US start-up MagiQ."
Or maybe we should use The Register's article titled Quantum crypto moves out of the lab [theregister.co.uk] . Here's their first paragraph:
"Quantum cryptography - long the stuff of cyberpunk novels and hi-tech spy stories - is leaving the laboratory and making its way into commercial markets. A briefing session at the UK's Department of Trade and Industry on Wednesday featured demonstrations of working quantum key exchange systems by QinetiQ, Toshiba Cambridge and US start-up MagiQ."
Or another article [issuperstore.com] and you can probably guess that the opening paragraph there will make you think there's a glitch in the matrix.

Both The Register and SecurityFocus show ads, and they're just rehashing some company's PR spam and profiting from readers. But this is all academic -- the more interesting question is why you don't seem to find it objectionable that the bulk of these articles, even if from reputable places, ARE ads themselves?

Re:Boycott Roland Piquepaille Stories (2, Insightful)

goldspider (445116) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415756)

Because SecurityFocus and The Register aren't submitting stories to Slashdot with links to their own websites.

Not Mature (1)

AmicoToni (123984) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415342)

The technology is interesting and promising, but further development is necessary.
A price tag of $20000 is not justifiable over 120km. You can drive that distance in a couple of hours, and that is a) cheaper and b) enables face-to-face interaction.
I wonder whather they are really expecting anyone to buy such a system, or rather they just really want to stir interest on the technology instead.

is it toshiba news week? (1)

sakura the mc (795726) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415447)

when are they going to be able to encrypt every packet i send out?

Its not really an advancement in cyrptography (2, Interesting)

twfry (266215) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415448)

What they are doing here is encrypting each frame with a different key where the key is sent using quantum states so that any eaves dropping will be discovered. Their stated reason is that decrypting each frame is much more difficult than if the entire stream was encrypted with a single key.

Basically what they are saying is their system has several thousand keys instead of just one. But that does not make the underlying transmission any more secure. If it is possible to brute force one key, it is possible to brute force many keys.

All they are doing is making it less pratical to use a brute force attack. I'd classify this as being closer to a "security through obscurity" technique rather than a real advancement.

Now if they sent the entire data stream using quatum bits, that would be something different.

Re:Its not really an advancement in cyrptography (1)

hazee (728152) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415556)

If it is possible to brute force one key, it is possible to brute force many keys.

Um, no. You might be able to brute force a single key, if you've got a supercomputer handy and a few months to spare. But brute forcing x keys will take x times as long.

With this technique, even if you did force a key, that'd only get you single lousy frame, which is a helluva lot more secure than the old way, where you would have gotten the whole stream. Now, to get the next frame, you've got to repeat the cracking process all over again.

Re:Its not really an advancement in cyrptography (1)

erlenic (95003) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415938)

Quantum encryption allows you to exchange one-time pads. Basically, you use a key that has the same number of bits as your message and then XOR them together. This is unbreakable without the key, not just hard to break. Usually this requires meeting and exchanging keys beforehand. QE makes it impossible to intercept the key in transmission, meaning that a one-time pad can be used without meeting beforehand.

Re:Its not really an advancement in cyrptography (1)

jlaxson (580785) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416009)

You miss the point. This system DOES make the underlying transmission secure. Quantum key exchange is impossible to eavesdrop on. Combine this with XOR (which is impossible to break any way other than brute force), and you have a very secure system. Plus, with advanced compression techniques, knowing the contents of one frame tells you very little about the video at that frame.

What happened to Oscar? (2, Funny)

Vorondil28 (864578) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415488)

From the article:
Single photons do not split, so if the hacker (Eve) measures the photons on the fibre, they will not reach the intended recipient (Bob).

IIRC, "Oscar" was the traditional (wo)man-in-the-middle. If this new "Eve" is hot, she can have all the photons she wants.

Re:What happened to Oscar? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12416565)

It's been Alice-Bob-Eve for as long as I've been studying cryptography (only about a decade, admittedly).

Why? (5, Insightful)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415496)

I don't see this as being really practical for security. So you've got all of this quantum-encrypted video which is infinitely better than an SSH-encrypted stream and you're feeling pretty smug about how unbreakable it is. Meanwhile, the janitor has planted a bug under your desk and is eavesdropping on everything you say. Or someone else hid a pinhole camera in a plant and is recording it all.

While I applaud the research and find the technology cool, I don't think a lack of decent encryption technology is the weakest link with regards to security.

How presumptuous! (1)

lheal (86013) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415537)

If you use a webcam to talk with your mom, this tool is not for you.

But you don't know what Mom and I do over the webcam. She's SO Hot in those fishnet stockings!

Just kidding. I have no mother.

Let's use a buzzword! (5, Informative)

Bender0x7D1 (536254) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415573)

There is nothing really exciting about this other than the overkill usage of quantum cryptography (also called quantum key exchange).

Basically, they are trying to generate enough keys so any succesful breaking of the cipher used gets only one frame of video. The only "exciting" part is they are using quantum cryptography to do this. However, this is like using a sledgehammer to push in a thumb tack - It uses a lot more hardware, and isn't the easiest or best method.

Another way to do this would be to conduct a large number of Diffie-Hellman key exchanges [rsasecurity.com] or STS exchanges, (one for each frame), and use the new key for each frame.
Or, even easier, both sides could use identical Linear Feedback Shift Registers to generate the same keys that they need. They cost way less than $20k and since a compromise of the system at either end would destroy the privacy afforded by the quantum encryption, just as secure.
Or, they could exchange one-time pads on a DVD and use the bits on there as the key. If my math is right, then a 4GB CD could hold enough keys for over 1100 hours of video, assuming a 256 bit key and 30 frames/sec. Exchanging 2 or 3 DVDs a year (if that) doesn't seem unreasonable.

None of these methods require a dedicated fiber line connecting the two groups. It can be performed over regular Ethernet if the groups want to. Translation: I can use it to talk to someone more than 120km away.

This isn't to say that some groups wouldn't want quantum security for something - if I was a Swiss bank that made daily transfers of a billion dollars to a German or Italian or French bank, then sure, I should spend the extra couple hundred k for an obscenely secure system.

This also begs the question of why encrypt each frame differently? Since it is VIDEO, then something in the picture is probably important - like a PowerPoint slide or graph or something. Since a presenter usually spends a minute or two on each slide, this means that an attacker would only need to decrypt one out of every 1800 slides (assuming 30 frames/second) to get the information they wanted. I think that it is a good idea to change keys as often as possible, but you have to ask what is the benefit for the added cost/overhead. In this case, I don't think it is very much.

So nice use of the "quantum cryptography" buzzword, but bad application of crypto technology in general.

Re:Let's use a buzzword! (1)

erlenic (95003) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415970)

The point of QE is to exchange not just any ordinary keys, but one-time pads. OTPs literally cannot be broken without stealing the key, and QE makes it literally impossible to steal the key.

Re:Let's use a buzzword! (1)

gozu (541069) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416018)

Mod parent up. I wish more people wrote comments like this one.

Diffie-Hellman slightly less secure (2, Informative)

Autobahn (785686) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416405)

While I agree with the thrust of your post, there's one bone I have to pick.

Diffie-Hellman and all other nominal one-way functions haven't been proven secure - it could well be possible that one-way functions don't exist, in which case all security based on them is worthless. Even if OWFs do exist and Diffie-Hellman is one it is still breakable in exponential time, which is vulnerable if quantum computers (or equivalent) are developed, and could potentially be vulnerable to a specially-designed supercomputer. OTOH a functional quantum link is completely eavesdrop-proof when proper protocols are used.

Sure, most people don't have to worry about a secret D-H/OWF inverting algorithm, but for the NSA and some of the other people this is targeted at even that tiny bit of extra security is incredibly valuable.

The amount of money pouring into quantum cryptography almost makes you wonder if the NSA might have found that OWFs do not exist...

How often? (2, Insightful)

Jobe_br (27348) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415641)

So, maybe I haven't been following the news, but have there been many instances of corporate video conferences being tapped/monitored/etc.?!

I understand the need to develop these technologies, but at least admit that there isn't any immediate demand besides possibly military applications. I much rather have someone working on securing ChoicePoint, Lexus Nexus, and a few other large data warehousing systems ... maybe that's just me?

Go back to middle school, Roland Piquepaille (1)

mscnln (785138) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415730)

But if you're working for a company and that you have to routinely discuss about sensitive future projects or the possible acquisition of another company, you need more security, and this new video conferencing system based on quantum cryptography is a tool you need.

Wow.
How can an educated person write garbage like that? I would expect something similar from a 5th grader.

secure (1, Insightful)

n2networksolutions (880896) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415744)

What is secure? Nothing secure today will be secure tomorrow. Jeremy MCSE MCSA CCNA http://www.n2networksolutions.com/ [n2networksolutions.com] Arizona computer consulting

Sure (0, Offtopic)

RoadkillBunny (662203) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415753)

If you use a webcam to talk with your mom, this tool is not for you.

But if you are the avergae geek, you'll use it anyways to talk to your mom.

Limited applications, but promising (1)

buffoverflow (623685) | more than 9 years ago | (#12415851)

Seems the use of VTC with integrated quantum crypto is really very limited in usefulness, due to distance, cost, and required infrastructure. Where I would think it to be most effective, military installations that are in relative close proximity, yet separated by public land, isn't feasible because of lack of NSA approval on the devices (US military only of course).

It is however; very good to see that the industry is recognizing the need for commercially available devices with powerful embedded crypto systems. I can only hope that others follow this lead and begin to incorporate QC into other platforms.

Personally, I would like to see things like quantum crypto enabled network devices (routers & switches), secure network attached storage systems, and providers that sell these truly secure network services.

In addition, does anyone know if the currently available quantum crypto systems will operate over wave division multiplexed systems? If they did, or possible that they will in the future, the applications for QC enabled systems would be almost endless.

VPN (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12415917)

Why not just use a VPN between to two sites. its a lot cheaper than 20000

Um, what about a VPN? (1)

aardwolf204 (630780) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416011)

Is it just me, or is using currently available teleconference protocols over a VPN just as secure?

That way you could use MSN, iChat, Jabber, whatever over PPTP, IPSec, or whatever floats your boat.

Let me know if I'm way off base here.

Thanks,
Aardwolf

Re:Um, what about a VPN? (2, Informative)

buffoverflow (623685) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416154)

Way off base? Yes very much so. Quantum cryptography is currently considered unbreakable. With even the strongest standard ciphers, AES, serpent, twofish, etc, there are a variety of methods of attack; whether it is against the algorithm, the keys, or the implementation.

With quantum cryptography, an attack it basically impossible, as any attempt to intercept the communications (tapping the fiber) causes an interruption to the photons, and the entire exchange stops.

For the most part, using a VPN with strong ciphers for a transform (IPSec+AES+HMAC) is more than enough for almost any application. This would really be a limited "niche" solution.

Pfft, that won't last for long. (1)

OmgTEHMATRICKS (836103) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416022)

All the hackers will have to do is make a quantum leap into the past to stop it from ever existing. That's a no brainer.

Potential problem (3, Funny)

Bradlegar the Hobbit (132082) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416201)

Quantum cryptography is neat, to be sure, but what happens if the cat dies?

Internet Joke (1)

zallus (714582) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416359)

Then we know someone has been downloading porn.

Are we forgetting something (1)

bobwall (797937) | more than 9 years ago | (#12416321)

I'd like to point out that quantum cryptography (depending on the protocol) does not protect against man in the middle. Unsurprisingly, some guy in Russia already has
done research on this:

http://www.vad1.com/qcr/present-attacks-via-optica l-loopholes-erlangen-200409/present-attacks-via-op tical-loopholes-erlangen-200409.pdf [vad1.com]

There goes my confidence for quantum cryptography.
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