It’s not something you see when you browse the internet. It’s not something you see when you hand someone cash. But you may notice it when you’re reaching for the credit card reader at your local Starbucks to accept your credit card chip.
Why Our Encryption Protocols Need To Change
Over a decade ago, the perfect cipher was created, One-Time Pad (OTP), a technique which provides a one-time encryption key allowing a small group of participants and applications to communicate securely with one another. In today’s digital age, OTP allows the world to connect securely on a global scale.
However, encryption isn’t something to sit back and watch in action—it needs to be groomed, updated, and most importantly, adapted to the age of technology we are in. The problem facing the cryptography space is “key distribution.” When it comes to encryption protocols, we should be moving forward in building up security, while at the same time building up efficiency.
Transport Layer Security (TLS) is a global security protocol that provides privacy and data integrity across the globe. It’s most widely used among websites, allowing two applications to communicate seamlessly. Having originated and evolved from Netscape’s Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), TLS provides message authentication, key material generation, and enables platforms that provide a more secure algorithm.
In The Crypto Age, Encryption Needs To Evolve—Again
One-Time Pad, which cannot be cracked, requires the use of a one-time, pre-shared key. The problem with that mirrors a similar problem that the digital cash space faces—double spending. And that makes it hard to distribute unique keys for every bit of every message—and it’s why the current TLS doesn’t provide them. Right now, we are on the third version of TLS, officially dubbed version 1.2.
One company, QWYIT (pronounced “Quiet”), provides an encryption system similar to TLS and believes that in the age of cryptography, security experts should be aiming to create new and better ways for us to protect ourselves.
By providing, producing, and distributing a one-time key, QWYIT addresses the problem of double-spending and the shortcomings of TLS and OTP.
“The new credit card readers are not the answer, because the security techniques providing the authentication and encryption are bloated, containing too many transactions without any security improvement,” says Paul McGough, CTO of Qwyit LLC.
McGough believes the ultimate goal in cryptography and in this digital space is to authenticate every transmission, not every session—in real time.
With each passing day, we see new reasons to bolster our security, even behind the scenes.