• EncryptionNew chip to bring highest level of encryption to mobile devices

    Random number generators are crucial to the encryption that protects our privacy and security when engaging in digital transactions such as buying products online or withdrawing cash from an ATM. For the first time, engineers have developed a fast random number generator based on a quantum mechanical process that could deliver the world’s most secure encryption keys in a package tiny enough to use in a mobile device.

  • EncryptionUnbreakable encrypted messages a step closer

    Until now, unbreakable encrypted messages were transmitted via a system envisioned by American mathematician Claude Shannon, considered the “father of information theory.” Shannon combined his knowledge of algebra and electrical circuitry to come up with a binary system of transmitting messages that are secure, under three conditions: the key is random, used only once, and is at least as long as the message itself. Researchers have now moved beyond the theoretical in demonstrating that an unbreakable encrypted message can be sent with a key that is far shorter than the message — the first time that has ever been done.

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  • EncryptionFBI director calls for “adult conversation” on encryption – and the privacy-security balance

    James Comey, the FBI director, has again said that end-to-end encryption on digital devices makes it impossible for his agency to investigate crimes and acts of terrorism— and called for an “adult conversation” with the manufacturers of these devices. Widespread encryption built into smartphones was “making more and more of the room that we are charged to investigate dark,” Comey said at a cybersecurity symposium.

  • EncryptionHouse committee releases encryption report, laying foundation for a national dialogue

    Terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino have sparked a public debate on the use of encryption in the United States because the attackers used encrypted communications to evade detection, a phenomenon known as “going dark.” Earlier this week, the Majority Staff of the House Homeland Security Committee released a new report, titled Going Dark, Going Forward: A Primer on the Encryption Debate. The summarizes the committee’s findings, based on more than 100 meetings and briefings committee staff and members have held with key stakeholders over the past year.

  • Digital forensicsFBI's approach to digital investigations puts security at risk: Expert

    A cybersecurity expert argues that the FBI’s recent and widely publicized efforts to compel Apple Computer to write software to unlock an iPhone used by a terrorist in California reflects an outdated approach to law enforcement that threatens to weaken the security of all smartphones, potentially putting the private information of millions of smartphone users at risk and undermining the growing use of smartphones as trusted authenticators for accessing online information.

  • EncryptionItalian police cannot unlock Bari terrorist iPhone

    The Italian security services have been unable to unlock the Apple iPhone 6 plus of a suspect member of a terrorist ring in the city of Bari. Analysts say the development will likely result in another stand-off between Apple and a government fighting terrorism, similar to the stand-off between Apple and the U.S. government over the iPhone used by the San Bernardino terrorists.

  • CybersecurityDefending encrypted data from quantum computer threat

    If an exotic quantum computer is invented that could break the codes we depend on to protect confidential electronic information, what will we do to maintain our security and privacy? This is the overarching question posed by a new report from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), whose cryptography specialists are beginning the long journey toward effective answers.

  • CryptographyLaser technique enables super-fast, super-secure quantum cryptography

    Researchers have developed a new method to overcome one of the main issues in implementing a quantum cryptography system, raising the prospect of a useable “unbreakable” method for sending sensitive information hidden inside particles of light.

  • EncryptionWhatsApp implements end-to-end encryption

    WhatsApp announced on Tuesday that it has implemented complete end-to-end encryption which will protect all text, photo, video, and voice communications from eavesdropping. This means hackers and criminals will be shut out, but so will law enforcement and intelligence services, and even the company itself. This means that the company will not able to comply with court orders to allow law enforcement access to the information stored on the encrypted device. Leaders of law enforcement agencies were quick to criticize WhatsApp’s move for creating “warrant-proof” spaces for criminals and terrorists.

  • CryptographyNew cryptographic techniques based on hard mathematical problems

    Cryptographic methods are typically created following the ad-hoc principle: somebody comes up with an algorithm; others attempt to break it — if they do not succeed, it means that the algorithm is secure. researchers develop new cryptographic algorithms that are based on particularly hard mathematical problems. They would be virtually unbreakable.

  • EncryptionSen. Wyden said he would filibuster efforts to mandate back doors

    Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon), a critic of the NSA domestic spying programs, said he would filibuster any attempt by fellow lawmakers to require U.S. technology companies to weaken the encryption systems with which they equip their devices. Referring to Apple fight against a court order requiring the company to relax the encryption of iPhone used by the two San Bernardino terrorists, Wyden said that consumers were asking: “Are these for the privacy rights of the dead terrorist?”

  • EncryptionFBI cracks terrorists’ iPhone without Apple's help

    The Justice Department on Monday asked a court to withdraw the government’s request that the court order Apple to help the FBI gain access to the encrypted iPhone used by the San Bernardino terrorists. The Justice Department filed the request after the FBI had successfully accessed data stored on an encrypted iPhone. The FBI wanted the court to compel Apple to relax the 10-attempt limit, which is part of the encryption system which comes with the device. If there are more than ten attempts to guess the password, the phone locks forever and all the data on it is wiped out. The FBI argued that its computers, using brute-force, would be able to break the phone’s password, but that it would take more than ten attempts.

  • EncryptionFBI may be able to break into San Bernardino terrorist’s phone without Apple’s help

    Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym has postponed until 5 April a court hearing about the FBI’s request that the court would order Apple to unlock the phone of one of the San Bernardino terrorists. The FBI asked the judge to postpone the hearing after the agency said it may have found a way to unlock the phone without Apple’s help.

  • CybersecurityHackers could decrypt iMessage photos, videos

    A team of researchers has poked a hole in Apple’s iMessage encryption software. The bug would enable a skilled hacker to decrypt photos and videos sent as secure instant messages. The details of the vulnerability will be published after Apple has issued an update that corrects the flaw.

  • EncryptionSecure, user-controlled data

    By Larry Hardesty

    Most people with smartphones use a range of applications that collect personal information and store it on Internet-connected servers — and from their desktop or laptop computers, they connect to Web services that do the same. Some use still other Internet-connected devices, such as thermostats or fitness monitors, that also store personal data online. Generally, users have no idea which data items their apps are collecting, where they’re stored, and whether they’re stored securely. Cryptographic system would allow users to decide which applications access which aspects of their data.