First released by DIVQSec, translated from German.
German industry association for quantum security (DIVQSec) founded with the goal of promoting industrially usable solutions for quantum secure communication and cryptography through national value chains and thereby ensuring technological sovereignty
The cryptographic protection of Germany’s critical infrastructure, sensitive data in companies or global payment transactions against external attacks is becoming increasingly important in our more and more interconnected and digitized world. Equally important is the reliable protection of government information to ensure national sovereignty in the future.
Current developments in quantum technology, and in particular the advances in quantum computing, pose a new challenge because established and widespread cryptographic procedures can be hacked. With appropriate quantum algorithms, it is possible to reconstruct the private key portion, which is actually secret, from the necessarily public key of asymmetric procedures. This endangers an essential part of the cryptographic infrastructure and new solutions must be developed.
One of these solutions is the “Quantum Key Distribution” (QKD). If implemented correctly, QKD is information-theoretically provably secure – even against yet unknown quantum algorithms or against attacks by supercomputers in combination with new mathematical concepts. Alternative approaches pursue an algorithmic solution and investigate more complex mathematical problems to fend off attacks on the key exchange (“Post Quantum Cryptography”, (PQC), or “Quantum Resistant Algorithms”, (QRA)).
Both paths form the supporting pillars for “quantum secure” cryptography.
The scientific basis for this has been developed in Germany and internationally over the last decades. In particular, new components, protocols and systems have been developed in quantum technologies. Europe-wide funding programs1 currently aim at increasing the technological maturity level and enabling the integration of the technologies into existing infrastructures. In Germany2 this is being achieved through the cooperation of renowned institutes, universities and industrial partners in joint projects and schemes. Examples of this are large-scale projects such as Q.Link.X3 and QuNET4, or projects in the PQC area that address various use cases5.
However, basic research alone is not enough to develop applications that would be technically and economically viable on the market. It is therefore necessary to implement a value-enhancing transfer of research results on QKD and PQC into highly secure systems for real-world applications. This requires many years of industrial experience of various players in the fields of classical cryptography, system security, component manufacturing and system integration as well as network architecture and operation.
In order to be able to solve this interdisciplinary task, an interest group of the German industry with following manifesto has been founded:
The German Industrial Association for Quantum Security (DIVQSec) makes it its business to promote industrially usable solutions for quantum secure communication and cryptography through a national value chain and thus to guarantee technological sovereignty.
The solutions are to be developed and offered in the European Economic Area and serve as a basis for securing national and European critical infrastructure. In particular, they are also intended to protect state institutions and highly sensitive data in private companies.
DIVQSec serves as a communication platform and designer of an ecosystem for quantum secure cryptography and a future quantum internet, in particular to do justice to the interdisciplinary nature of this technology.
The interests of the participating companies are consolidated and jointly represented by DIVQSec. This will strengthen the exchange of information on federal and European politics, on corresponding interest groups in other EU member states or on an European level, as well as on the public and basic research.
1 Quantum Flagship Program of the EU: https://qt.eu/
2 “Quantum Technologies – from the Fundamentals to the Market”, https://www.bmbf.de/upload_filestore/pub/Quantentechnologien.pdf and “Innovation Potentials of Second Generation Quantum Technologies” https://www.acatech.de/publikation/innovationspotenziale-der-quantentechnologien/