Hacking commercial quantum cryptography systems by tailored bright illumination

  title={Hacking commercial quantum cryptography systems by tailored bright illumination},
  author={Lars Lydersen and Carlos Wiechers and Christoffer Wittmann and Dominique Elser and Johannes Skaar and Vadim Makarov},
  journal={Nature Photonics},
By using bright pulses of light to ‘blind’ the avalanche photodiode detectors used in quantum cryptography equipment, scientists in Europe have shown that it is possible to tracelessly steal the secret encryption key generated by such systems and thus compromise their security. 

Quantum key distribution without detector vulnerabilities using optically seeded lasers

Quantum cryptography immune from detector attacks is realized by the development of a source of indistinguishable laser pulses based on optically seeded gain-switched lasers. Key rates exceeding 1 Mb

Quantum cryptography: Continuous improvement

It has now been shown that long-distance cryptographic communication is just as effective when the scheme involves measuring the wave properties of light, rather than its particle properties.

Fortifying single photon detectors to quantum hacking attacks by using wavelength upconversion

  • G. Kanter
  • Physics
    2015 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO)
  • 2015
Upconversion detection can isolate the temporal and wavelength window over which light can be efficiency received. Using appropriate designs the ability of an eavesdropper to damage, measure, or

Intensity and State Estimation in Quantum Cryptography

This paper describes how the communicating parties can employ intensity and state estimation to detect if the eavesdropper has siphoned off and injected photons in the received communication. This is

Analysis of information protection methods in the system telecommunications based on quantum cryptography

  • B. IbrahimovMirfatma Javadova
  • Computer Science
    İnformasiya təhlükəsizliyinin aktual multidissiplinar elmi-praktiki problemləri IV respublika konfransının materialları
  • 2018
The system key distribution and protocols in the system quantum cryptography are considered and the methods, algorithms and principles operation of quantum cryptography to protect information from unauthorized access to a telecommunications system using fiber-optic communication lines are partially analyzed.

A quantum hacking method without Eve’s detection and generation device

We develop quantum hacking method without requires complex devices including cost high and has moderate quantum efficiency. Using the proposed quantum hacking method, we confirm that Eve can acquire

Quantum Erasure Cryptography

This work proposes a protocol for quantum key distribution (QKD) based on quantum erasure, promising inherent security against detector attacks, and demonstrates its security against a powerful detector-blinding attack.

Viewpoint: Foiling Quantum Hackers

  • H. Lo
  • Computer Science
  • 2013
Researchers have implemented a new quantum encryption method that, in principle, may provide the ultimate security against hackers in real-world cryptography applications.

Device-independent quantum key distribution

  • M. Curty
  • Physics
    2012 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO)
  • 2012
Quantum hacking against commercial quantum key distribution (QKD) systems, particularly via detector side channel attacks, has emerged as a hot topic. We analyze two potential solutions to this

Timing attacks on practical quantum cryptographic systems

  • N. Jain
  • Computer Science, Physics
  • 2012
Synchronization of electronic & optoelectronic components involved in such tasks thus becomes a necessary and important step, however, it also opens up the possibility of timing-based loopholes and attacks.



Quantum cryptography protocols robust against photon number splitting attacks for weak laser pulse implementations.

A new class of quantum key distribution protocols, tailored to be robust against photon number splitting (PNS) attacks are introduced, which differs from the original protocol by Bennett and Brassard (BB84) only in the classical sifting procedure.

Information leakage via side channels in freespace BB84 quantum cryptography

Measurements of all degrees of freedom of the transmitted photons are reported on in order to estimate potential side channels of the state preparation at Alice in a free space BB84 transmitter operating with polarization encoded attenuated pulses.

Security against individual attacks for realistic quantum key distribution

A formula for the secure bit rate per time slot of an experimental setup is obtained which can be used to optimize the performance of existing schemes for the considered scenario.

Quantum hacking: adding a commercial actively-quenched module to the list of single-photon detectors controllable by Eve

We show how PerkinElmer SPCM-AQR actively-quenched detector module can be controlled by an eavesdropper. The scheme uses bright optical pulses to get the detector blinded. In this mode, one can

Fast and simple one-way quantum key distribution

A new protocol for practical quantum cryptography, tailored for an implementation with weak coherent pulses to obtain a high key generation rate, featuring a high efficiency in terms of distilled secret bit per qubit.

Breaking a quantum key distribution system through a timing side channel.

It is experimentally demonstrated how, in some implementations, timing information revealed during public discussion between the communicating parties can be used by an eavesdropper to undetectably access a significant portion of the "secret" key.

“Plug and play” systems for quantum cryptography

We present a time-multiplexed interferometer based on Faraday mirrors, and apply it to quantum key distribution. The interfering pulses follow exactly the same spatial path, ensuring very high

Faked states attack on quantum cryptosystems

A new type of attack on quantum cryptography systems is proposed. In this attack, Eve utilizes various optical imperfections in Bob's scheme and constructs light pulses so that Bob does not

Security of quantum key distribution with imperfect devices

This paper prove the security of the Bennett-Brassard (BB84) quantum key distribution protocol in the case where the source and detector are under the limited control of an adversary. This proof

Security of quantum key distribution with bit and basis dependent detector flaws

Wesuggest a powerful attack that can be used in systems with detector efficiency mismatch, even if the detector assignments are chosen randomly by Bob, in the presence of bit and basis dependent detector flaws.