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Elimination of a Second-Law-Attack, and All Cable-Resistance-Based Attacks, in the Kirchhoff-Law-Johnson-Noise (KLJN) Secure Key Exchange System

by Laszlo B. Kish 1,*,† and Claes-Göran Granqvist 2,†
1
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3128, USA
2
Department of Engineering Sciences, The Ångström Laboratory, Uppsala University, P.O. Box 534, SE-75121 Uppsala, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Entropy 2014, 16(10), 5223-5231; https://doi.org/10.3390/e16105223
Received: 10 September 2014 / Revised: 23 September 2014 / Accepted: 28 September 2014 / Published: 7 October 2014
We introduce the so far most efficient attack against the Kirchhoff-law-Johnson-noise (KLJN) secure key exchange system. This attack utilizes the lack of exact thermal equilibrium in practical applications and is based on cable resistance losses and the fact that the Second Law of Thermodynamics cannot provide full security when such losses are present. The new attack does not challenge the unconditional security of the KLJN scheme, but it puts more stringent demands on the security/privacy enhancing protocol than for any earlier attack. In this paper we present a simple defense protocol to fully eliminate this new attack by increasing the noise-temperature at the side of the smaller resistance value over the noise-temperature at the side with the greater resistance. It is shown that this simple protocol totally removes Eve’s information not only for the new attack but also for the old Bergou-Scheuer-Yariv attack. The presently most efficient attacks against the KLJN scheme are thereby completely nullified. View Full-Text
Keywords: unconditional security; KLJN key exchange; Johnson noise; second law unconditional security; KLJN key exchange; Johnson noise; second law
MDPI and ACS Style

Kish, L.B.; Granqvist, C.-G. Elimination of a Second-Law-Attack, and All Cable-Resistance-Based Attacks, in the Kirchhoff-Law-Johnson-Noise (KLJN) Secure Key Exchange System. Entropy 2014, 16, 5223-5231.

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