Toshiba has announced it has developed the world’s fastest quantum key distribution (QKD) device, the development for which has been carried out in collaboration with the Toshiba Research Europe laboratory in Cambridge, United Kingdom.
The quantum key distribution device, which has a speed of 13.7 Mbps, is an increase of seven times the previous record in this type of information transmission technology, held by the company since 2016 with 1.9 Mbps.
Quantum computing already offers equal opportunities to cryptographers and hackers, which is why quantum mechanics are arguing that organisations need to start considering how it will impact them now. Businesses within finance, healthcare and professional services need to start considering practical quantum key distribution applications to diminish the online security threats of the future.
What is quantum key distribution?
- Quantum key distribution (QKD) is a secure communication method which implements a cryptographic protocol involving components of quantum mechanics; and
- It enables two parties to produce a shared random secret key known only to them, which can then be used to encrypt and decrypt messages.
Quantum cryptography enables the secure encryption and transfer of all types of information, including biometric and genomic data.
Broadly speaking, quantum key distribution consists of the generation of a single code key only shared by the sender and recipient of the information, which, if intercepted by a third party, becomes automatically illegible.
According to analysts, quantum cryptography will generate a large volume of business in the coming years due to the constant growth of security needs in the transmission of data online. In fact, according to Global Industry Analysts, this market will exceed €1.7bn in 2024.
Toshiba began its quantum cryptography research in 2003 and seven years later became the first company to achieve a transfer rate of more than 1 Mbps. Since then, it has carried out continuous research and development to increase the speed of quantum communication and to initiate its commercialisation in sectors such as finance, health or social infrastructure.