(DevDiscourse) Researchers enabled the first quantum conference call by harnessing the multipartite quantum entanglement property of quantum physics to share keys simultaneously between the four parties, via a process called Quantum Conference Key Agreement (QCKA), overcoming the limitations of traditional QKD systems to share keys between just two users.
Researchers at Quantum Communications Hub along with their German colleagues recently demonstrated a quantum-secure conference call involving four parties, a timely advance in quantum secured communications that could lead to conference calls with inherent unhackable security measures in future.
Secure communications rely upon the sharing of cryptographic keys. The keys used in most systems are relatively short and can therefore be compromised by hackers while the key distribution process is under increasing threat from quickly advancing quantum computers. To address these growing threats to data security, new, secure methods of key distribution are needed.secure communications rely upon the sharing of cryptographic keys. The keys used in most systems are relatively short and can therefore be compromised by hackers while the key distribution process is under increasing threat from quickly advancing quantum computers. To address these growing threats to data security, new, secure methods of key distribution are needed.
The researchers harnessed the multipartite quantum entanglement property of quantum physics to share keys simultaneously between the four parties, via a process called Quantum Conference Key Agreement (QCKA), overcoming the limitations of traditional QKD systems to share keys between just two users, and enabling the first quantum conference call to occur. The four parties, separated by up to 50 km of optical fibre, shared an image of a Cheshire cat.
Led by Hub researchers based at Heriot-Watt University, the research titled “Experimental quantum conference key agreement” is published in the journal Science Advances.

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