Intel and Microsoft are working with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop a usable form of homomorphic encryption.
Homomorphic encryption is considered the holy grail of encryption. With standard options, data is encrypted when stored and in transit, but it must be decrypted to manipulate.
In contrast, homomorphic encryption keeps all values encrypted, even when in use. For example, two numerical values encrypted with homomorphic encryption could be given to a third party, added together and returned. All values, including the calculated sum, would remain encrypted the entire time, with only the originator able to decrypt them. Homomorphic encryption would be a significant upgrade over current methods.
Fully homomorphic encryption remains the holy grail in the quest to keep data secure while in use. Despite strong advances in trusted execution environments and other confidential computing technologies to protect data while at rest and in transit, data is unencrypted during computation, opening the possibility of potential attacks at this stage. This frequently inhibits our ability to fully share and extract the maximum value out of data. We are pleased to be chosen as a technology partner by DARPA and look forward to working with them as well as Microsoft to advance this next chapter in confidential computing and unlock the promise of fully homomorphic encryption for all. – Rosario Cammarota, principal engineer, Intel Labs, and principal investigator, DARPA DPRIVE program
With ongoing cybersecurity threats, and an increased reliance on the cloud homomorphic encryption could be a valuable tool in the fight to keep data secure.
We are pleased to bring our expertise in cloud computing and homomorphic encryption to the DARPA DPRIVE program, collaborating with Intel to advance this transformative technology when ready into commercial usages that will help our customers close the last-mile gap in data confidentiality —– keeping data fully secure and private, whether in storage, transit or use. – Dr. William Chappell, chief technology officer, Azure Global, and vice president, Mission Systems, Microsoft.