Data security through optical encryption

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Data security through optical encryption

SEDI-ATI designs strong and reliable fiber-based solutions that are involved in current data security techniques through optical encryption.

The challenge

Secure the transmission of huge amounts of confidential data.

Major constraints

The solution might be exposed to:

  • various cyber attacks
  • electromagnetic interference

Encrypting your confidential data: a necessity

Modern enterprises, financial institutions, government agencies, network operators, and service providers rely on business-critical data. With the increasing value of confidential data generated and transmitted across networks, confidential data has become even more attractive to thieves and intruders. Also, more and more important information comes from video and images. Besides, considering the cloud, the Internet of Things (IoT), and the proliferation of diverse data centers, the security of information over internet becomes a serious issue as the transmitted data can be, at any moment, intercepted and extracted by non-authorized people.

Cybersecurity is a hot topic that is not to be taken lightly. This is why considerable effort is being devoted at the current time to data encryption with multiple security levels.

Encrypting with fiber optics without compromissing its transmission speed

As a result, organizations are revisiting their security strategies to ensure they are doing everything they can to protect their data. The ongoing security threats, including headlines about fiber cable intrusions, reinforce the need for robust in-flight optical encryption.

Optical encryption protects data transmission by encrypting the original data into cipher text. Without knowing the key for the encryption process, the hacker cannot recover the data. Optical encryption uses fiber-based devices. They have low latency and high processing speed; thus, the network is protected without compromising its transmission speed. Moreover, optical encryption is intrinsically immune to attacks based on the electromagnetic signature of a signal.

Optical encryption based on chaos and dense wavelength division multiplexing [DWDM] methods are even more popular. Chaos-based communications provide an approach for transmitting confidential data with a high level of robustness against various types of attacks. It also allows to jam the communication of hackers. In that method, the original data is decomposed into multiple data packages that are encrypted separately. Then, all the packages are multiplexed and compacted into a single package of data. This data is only properly decoded when in possession of the appropriate key to read it. Indeed, only the receiver that has knowledge on how the chaos is generated can reverse the chaos to recover the signal after appropriate filtering and synchronizing procedures applied to the multiplexing.

The SEDI-ATI optical multiplexers and couplers

Since many years, SEDI-ATI has been developing and manufacturing multimode wavelength division multiplexers and optical couplers with very high directivity. SEDI-ATI has designed, built and demonstrated reliable solutions that are currently in the field, such as custom modules implementing those fiber-based components. Today, these reliable and secured modules fully optically isolate strategic data centers.

Other processes are currently under study

For a higher security level, fiber-optic quantum key distribution is currently being investigated. Indeed, it could effectively protect the encryption process by encoding the key information on the quantum states of a single photon. Moreover, one important property for quantum key distribution is that it can indicate the existence of an eavesdropper trying to receive any information about the key.

To reply to such a challenge, SEDI-ATI has recently realized fiber optic hermetic feedthroughs and patch-cords dedicated to cryogenic applications which are required for quantum optics cryptography demonstration.

SEDI-ATI solution

SEDI-ATI designs custom modules implementing multimode wavelength division multiplexers and optical couplers with very high directivity. They allow to fully optically isolate strategic data centers from various cyber attack methods.

Advantages of the SEDI-ATI solution

  • highly reliable
  • does not radiate
  • immune to EMI