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Thursday, February 18, 2021

FHE for Using Encrypted Data

Very nicely done piece on the seeming paradox of FHE:

IBM Makes Encryption Paradox Practical  in IEEE Spectrum.

“Fully homomorphic” cryptography allows partial access to digital vaults without ever opening their locks  By Dan Garisto

How do you access the contents of a safe without ever opening its lock or otherwise getting inside? This riddle may seem confounding, but its digital equivalent is now so solvable that it’s becoming a business plan. 

IBM is the latest innovator to tackle the well-studied cryptographic technique called fully homomorphic encryption (FHE), which allows for the processing of encrypted files without ever needing to decrypt them first. Earlier this month, in fact, Big Blue introduced an online demo for companies to try out with their own confidential data. IBM’s FHE protocol is inefficient, but it’s workable enough still to give users a chance to take it for a spin. 

Today’s public cloud services, for all their popularity, nevertheless typically present a tacit tradeoff between security and utility. To secure data, it must stay encrypted; to process data, it must first be decrypted. Even something as simple as a search function has required data owners to relinquish security to providers whom they may not trust. .... "

See IBM's   Homomorphic Encryption Services demonstration  "  Unlock the value of sensitive data without decryption to preserve privacy .. " 

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