Atario wrote us with a link to a New Scientist article about an innovative new way of encrypting communications. An engineer at Texas A&M may have a way to exploit the thermal properties of a wire to create a secure channel. The result could be an effectively impenetrable way of securing communications, possibly outperforming quantum cryptography keys. "In their device, both the sender Alice and the receiver Bob have an identical pair of resistors, one producing high resistance, the other low resistance. The higher the total resistance on the line, the greater the thermal noise. Both Alice and Bob randomly choose which resistor to use ... Half the time ... they will choose different [resistances], producing an intermediate level of thermal noise, and it is now that a message can be sent. If Bob turns on his high resistor, and records an intermediate level of noise, he instantly knows that Alice has chosen her low resistor, in essence sending a bit of information such as 1 or 0. Kish's cipher does this many times, sending a random series of 1s and 0s that can form the basis of an encryption key, the researchers say."
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