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A method of Authentication for Quantum Networks

Authors: Stefan Rass


Quantum cryptography offers a way of key agreement, which is unbreakable by any external adversary. Authentication is of crucial importance, as perfect secrecy is worthless if the identity of the addressee cannot be ensured before sending important information. Message authentication has been studied thoroughly, but no approach seems to be able to explicitly counter meet-in-the-middle impersonation attacks. The goal of this paper is the development of an authentication scheme being resistant against active adversaries controlling the communication channel. The scheme is built on top of a key-establishment protocol and is unconditionally secure if built upon quantum cryptographic key exchange. In general, the security is the same as for the key-agreement protocol lying underneath.

Keywords: Quantum networks, Quantum Key Distribution, Meet-in-the-middle attack, unconditionally secure authentication

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