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Due partly to the low cost of internet of things equipment, the US military has been able to adopt “unprecedented numbers” of IoT-enabled devices. However, not all of those devices have the cryptographic security they ought to, and the issue will only be exacerbated as quantum computing and 5G wireless networks come online.
The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has told the press that the problem is that the amount of power cryptography consumes reduces the lifespan of devices in the field, which ultimately disincentives manufacturers from including security in their products. With some IoT devices expected to last over a decade in the field, the military needs cryptographic solutions that are low on power consumption.
For this reason the Cryptography for Hyper-scale Architectures in a Robust Internet Of Things (CHARIOT) program was established to “develop revolutionary approaches for fast, efficient, and quantum-resistant cryptographic operations for Internet of Things (IoT) devices,” according to a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) opportunity released by the agency.
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