- Patent awarded to inventors Richard Hughes, Jane Nordholt and Glen Peterson, who developed the technology while serving at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).
- Whitewood Encryption has exclusively licensed the technology from LANL as part of the company’s efforts to build holistic, enterprise solutions, including generating and managing entropy as well as quantum key management (QKM).
Boston (March 23, 2015) – Whitewood Encryption Systems, Inc., a builder of next-generation systems of data encryption that leverage advanced cryptography technologies emerging from U.S. centers of research excellence, announced today that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued U.S. Patent No. 8,929,554, with claims covering methods and systems for secure multi-party communication that are compatible with various key distribution protocols, including quantum key distribution (QKD).
The technology covered by the patent is designed to provide a scalable, cost-effective solution for bringing the advantages of QKD, which include forward security and low latency, to key management for networks with multiple users. The patent was awarded to inventors Richard Hughes, Jane Nordholt, and Glen Peterson, the scientists who developed the technology while working at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in New Mexico. Whitewood has obtained an exclusive license to the technology from LANL.
“Our invention reduces the cost and increases the practicality of network QKD immensely, relative to previous approaches,” said Hughes. “With this technology, enterprises have an opportunity to advance to quantum key management, or QKM, for networks, supporting a broad range of security functions, encryption, authentication and signatures.”
Traditional approaches to QKD for networks required a dedicated point-to-point link between each pair of users, leading to redundancy of resources. In contrast, Whitewood’s new QKM approach offers the advantages of quantum key distribution even to users who have no direct quantum link. The technology can also be applied as an overlay to existing optical networks, eliminating the need for a dedicated optical communications infrastructure.
“The ideas embodied in this patent are game-changing. They move QKD from a novel point-to-point technique to a modern networked QKM solution,” said Nordholt.
“This invention complements Whitewood’s portfolio of intellectual property in the quantum key management space, offering a quantum physics-based alternative to traditional cryptographic practices,” said John Serafini, Vice President at Allied Minds (LSE: ALM), the parent company of Whitewood. “This patent will work in tandem with other IP at Whitewood to generate a secure, trusted communications protocol that helps to reduce the vulnerabilities present in current encryption services, and make quantum communications a standard in secure multi-party information exchange.”
The patent describes communication protocols that can be used by groups of devices to communicate securely with each other using quantum cryptography. These protocols, and the devices that implement them, have the potential to make quantum technology less expensive and more readily available in the future. “The newly formed partnership between Los Alamos National Laboratory and Whitewood Encryption Systems represents a major step forward for the field. By bringing together leading researchers in networked quantum communications with top executives in cloud computing and enterprise IT, we will leverage decades of cutting-edge research to develop and deploy next-generation solutions for data security,” said Raymond Newell, R&D Scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Whitewood is a subsidiary company of Allied Minds Federal Innovations (AMFI), the division of Allied Minds dedicated to commercializing federal intellectual property. More information on Whitewood can be found at www.whitewoodsecurity.com, and details about the Allied Minds Federal Innovations portfolio can be found at www.alliedminds.com/subsidiaries/AMFI.