Hackers gonna hack. Until they encounter lattice cryptography.

The scale and sophistication of cyber-attacks escalates every year, as do the stakes. In five years, new methods of attack will make today’s security measures woefully inadequate. 

 

Hackers gonna hack. Until they encounter lattice cryptography.

The scale and sophistication of cyber-attacks escalates every year, as do the stakes. In five years, new methods of attack will make today’s security measures woefully inadequate. 

 

Cyber-attacks will continue to escalate

Nearly 4 billion data records were stolen in 2016. Each one cost the record holder around $158. Today, files are encrypted while in transit and at rest, but decrypted while in use. This allows hackers to view or steal unencrypted files. Cyber-attacks will continue to exploit this and today’s technologies will not be able to keep pace.  

For example, many years from now, a fault-tolerant, universal quantum computer with millions of qubits could quickly sift through the probabilities and decrypt even the strongest common encryption, rendering this foundational security methodology obsolete.

Challenges facing us today

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Cyber-crime damages are estimated to hit $6 trillion annually by 2021, according to Cybersecurity Ventures.

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As more of the world gains access to the Internet, the number of potential cyber-crime victims also increases.

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Today's encryption protects files during transit and when at rest providing opportunties for hackers to view or steal information.

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New technologies like quantum computing will outpace current encryption protocols.

Live presentation

IBM researcher Cecilia Boschini discusses her work on a new security method called lattice cryptography that hides data inside complex algebraic structures.

 

Live presentation

IBM researcher Cecilia Boschini discusses her work on a new security method called lattice cryptography that hides data inside complex algebraic structures.

 

New security methods based on lattice cryptography will emerge

IBM researchers are developing a new security method built on an underlying architecture known as lattice cryptography, which hides data inside complex math problems (algebraic structures) called lattices. The difficulty in solving these math problems is useful for cryptographers, because they can apply this intractability to protect information, even when quantum computers are strong enough to crack today’s encryption techniques.   

illustration of a lattice

Lattice-based cryptography isn’t only for thwarting future quantum computers. It is also the basis of another encryption technology called Fully Homomorphic Encryption (FHE). FHE could make it possible to perform calculations on a file without ever seeing sensitive data or exposing it to hackers.

 For example, a consumer credit reporting agency could analyze and produce credit scores without ever decrypting the personal data. And primary care physicians could share patient medical records with specialists, labs, or genomics researchers and pharmaceutical companies in a way that enables each party to access pertinent data without ever revealing the identity of the patient. 

illustration of a lattice

Quantum-safe cryptography

Lattice-based cryptography is complex cryptographic scheme designed to protect data from the threat of crypto-breaking by fault-tolerant universal quantum computers with millions of qubits. Such a system is still many years away, but with lattice cryptography we will be ready.

 

Quantum-safe cryptography

Lattice-based cryptography is complex cryptographic scheme designed to protect data from the threat of crypto-breaking by fault-tolerant universal quantum computers with millions of qubits. Such a system is still many years away, but with lattice cryptography we will be ready.

 

Cecilia Boschini | Lattice-based Cryptography @ IBM Research

IBM X-Force Command Center

Illustration of a lattice cryptographic structure

Predictions

IBM 5 in 5 predictions