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'unbreakable' Security Codes Inspired By Nature

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A lock on digital encryption.

Scientists say a new method of encrypting sensitive information was inspired by the time-varying nature of human cardio-respiratory functions.

Credit: Getty

Scientists at Lancaster University have patented a new method of encrypting confidential information that was inspired by the time-varying nature of the cardio-respiratory coupling functions recently discovered in humans.

The encryption method is based on a mathematical model of how the heart and lungs coordinate their rhythms by passing information between each other. "This promises an encryption scheme that is so nearly unbreakable that it will be equally unwelcome to Internet criminals and official eavesdroppers," says Lancaster's Peter McClintock.

The approach offers an infinite number of choices for the secret encryption key shared between the sender and receiver, making it virtually impossible for hackers and eavesdroppers to crack the code.

McClintock says the method also is resistant to interference from the random fluctuations or noise that affects all communications systems. Moreover, several different information streams can be sent simultaneously. The transmission capability would enable all digital devices in the home, for example, to operate on one encryption key instead of dozens of different ones.

From Lancaster University
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Abstracts Copyright © 2014 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


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