Toshiba, Ciena Collaborate to Demonstrate Quantum Secure Communication at OFC

March 27, 2024

SAN DIEGO, March 27, 2024 — Toshiba will demonstrate its quantum secure communication platform with Ciena, a global leader in networking systems, services, and software, at OFC Conference 2024. The quantum secure link will connect the Ciena and Toshiba exhibition booths with the OFCnet by using both QKD trusted node and multiplexing technology that will help to secure the network traffic over existing fiber optic cables.

Relentless progress in quantum computing can weaken much of the cryptography used today. In particular, all widely used forms of public key cryptography rely on the difficulty of certain mathematically hard problems, which can be solved efficiently on a large-scale quantum computer. To protect future network communications, new advancements and developments in “quantum-safe” technologies are critical to help eliminate attacks in the quantum era.

Additionally, today’s data is also susceptible to “harvest now, decrypt later” attacks, where an adversary can store encrypted messages today, to later decrypt when a large-scale quantum processor becomes available. This is particularly problematic for information with a long-term value, such as financial records, medical data, corporate intellectual property or details of a nation’s critical infrastructure.

The demonstration, which will run continuously from March 26–28 during the conference at Ciena booth #2427, OFCnet booth #923 and Toshiba booth #1108, will validate how quantum keys generated by Toshiba QKD devices can be used to encrypt data using Ciena’s Waveserver 5 to securely send data in a multilink environment, over two links in three locations, using a ‘Trusted Node.’ Secure keys for end-to-end are relayed at the Trusted Node.

“This demonstration will show that our Quantum Key Management System (Q-KMS), enables the ability to create secure networks and to protect multiple sites and locations,” said Shinya Murai, senior fellow at Toshiba Digital Solutions Corporation, Toshiba’s digital and quantum technology business arm. “In addition to this, Q-KMS performs proactive key allocation based on the QKD network capacity in real time. This enables high volume and low latency key delivery to encryption solution.”

As part of the demonstration, Toshiba will connect QKD units between the Toshiba and Ciena booths via OFCnet, showing unconditional secure key exchange with its QKD Systems LD and MU. It will also highlight how the flexibility of Ciena’s WaveLogic coherent encryption solution allows operators to deploy QKD solutions to match their operational needs, from co-propagating optical and quantum signals on a single fiber pair, to leveraging an additional fiber for more challenging optical spans.

“To address the immediate threat posed by quantum computers from potential Harvest Now, Decrypt Later attack methods, Ciena’s Waveserver 5 delivers a FIPS 140-3 level 2 compliant solution enabling 800G of encrypted capacity, using an innovative optical encryption approach that allows service providers to deploy quantum resistance today straight out of the box,” said Patrick Scully, director, product line management at Ciena.

Deployed over an existing single fiber or a fiber pair, the MU QKD System uses O-band WDM technology to overlay quantum signals with network data, eradicating the need for an additional dark fiber. This true co-existence between QKD and data dramatically reduces the CAPEX and OPEX costs involved in delivering quantum-safe encryption. With simple setup, auto-alignment, real-time optimization and high key rates, Multiplexed QKD System MU ensures operators are ready to deliver QKD across their networks.

“The rise of quantum computing has serious implications for current security methods and organizations need to take action now to mitigate risks to their communications,” said Andrew Shields, head of the Toshiba Europe’s Quantum Technology Division. “Validating the ability of our QKD technology to protect transmissions while using existing fiber networks is a huge step forward in making quantum-secure communications accessible for today’s organizations.”

About Toshiba

Toshiba Corporation leads a global group of companies that combines knowledge and capabilities from almost 150 years of experience in a wide range of businesses—from energy and social infrastructure to electronic devices—with world-class capabilities in information processing, digital and AI technologies. These distinctive strengths support Toshiba in building infrastructure that everyone can enjoy, and a connected data society, and in achieving the Company’s ultimate goal, a future that realizes carbon neutrality and a circular economy. Guided by the Basic Commitment of the Toshiba Group, “Committed to People, Committed to the Future,” Toshiba contributes to society’s positive development with services and solutions that lead to a better world. The Group and its 110,000 employees worldwide secured annual sales of 3.4 trillion yen (US$25.1 billion) in fiscal year 2022.


Source: Toshiba

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