Friday, October 14, 2005

More on the Myth

Okay, this one's not really about Shor and QKD, but it is about the authenticated channel for QKD.

I said the physicists underplayed the importance of the authenticated channel in operational practice, and was (rightly) chastened by Dave Bacon and Daniel Gottesman. In the interests of equal time, here's proof that not everyone in the computer networking community gets it:

A thread on an Internet Draft (= proposed RFC) on using QKD for key exchange for PPP. Here's a link to the Internet Draft itself (warning, that link will probably go stale in April 2006, and may or may not properly track revisions to the draft, depending on whether or not I picked up the right link). The email thread seems a little fragmented, part of the conversation appears to be taking place elsewhere.

I haven't actually read the draft (the "view document" link at the IETF site appears broken?!?), but from the email thread, it appears that Mr. Sfaxi either does not understand or cannot explain the use of the classical authenticated channel. Remember, gang: QKD requires access to an authenticated classical channel.

Stay tuned for more late-breaking news from the exciting world of IETF...

[I've you've just come into this conversation, I recommend reading this posting, this posting, and especially quant-ph/0406147.]

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