Concept: India’s technology startup QNu Labs has launched a security platform powered by quantum technology to encrypt IP data using random cryptographic numbers. The startup offers the quantum random number generator (QRNG) called Tropos and the quantum key distribution system (QKD) called Armos to address the issues around data security and privacy of vulnerable systems and networks.

Nature of Disruption: The platform leverages quantum physics to provide a new model to protect data and network. Tropos uses quantum mechanics to generate truly random numbers, which can help in various applications like one-time pad, lotteries and key generation in cryptography. Armos provides unconditional protection to data while securing the distribution of symmetric one-time pad encryption keys. It uses quantum encoding single photons of light that are sent through a dedicated fiber optical channel. It separates the encryption key from the data and directs it on a dedicated quantum channel. The symmetric key encryption monitors real-time threats on quantum keys and provides intrusion detection to block any kind of possible hacking activities. Any product changes identified in the quantum state of the keys will prompt Armos to initiate an alert and issue an accurate on-time report on the intrusion location. Armos instantly destroys compromised keys and generates a pair of quantum-safe cryptographic keys between two remote parties through an exchange of unhackable encoded quantum bits (qubits). As the keys cannot be cloned, the data remains unconditionally secured even if it is exposed.

Outlook: The current method of public-key encryption remains highly vulnerable, as hackers can easily execute ‘Harvest Now, Decrypt Later’ attack, in which they can copy, store and decrypt encrypted data at a later point of time. QNu Labs’ innovative quantum technology-powered solution can address the increasing issues around data security and privacy by deploying unhackable cryptographic keys, capable to secure critical data of enterprises, governments, finance and defense across the globe. The system employs a REST-ful API driven infrastructure that enables it to integrate with existing security suites. The startup has plans to increase its reach across WAN through satellite-based QKD and build solutions such as three-factor authentication using QRNG and QKD for digital transactions or secure blockchain Miniaturise QKD to go into a server or on to a device for 5G networks.