Quantum cryptography is crack-proof by its nature -- you can't inspect data without changing it -- but the available technology is currently limited to one-on-one connections. Toshiba has developed a quantum access networking system that could bring this airtight security to groups as large as 64 people. The approach gives each client a (relatively) basic quantum transmitter, and routes encrypted data through a central, high-speed photon detector that returns decryption keys. Such a network would not only secure entire workgroups, but lower the cost of encrypting each user. Quantum access networks won't be useful across internet-scale distances until researchers improve the signal integrity, but there may be a time when surveillance agencies will run out of potential targets.
Toshiba's quantum access networking promises spy-proof encryption for groups
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.