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Hitachi Energy use case: Quantum-enhanced encryption cards

QRNG-powered encryption cards for highly secure end-to-end authentication and encryption of control data with high-quality key generation based on true random numbers. QKD-ready for a Quantum-Safe end-to-end encryption for mission-critical real-time communication networks.


What are SECU1 and SENC1 encryption cards?

SECU1 and SENC1 are the first encryption cards for mission-critical infrastructure equipped with quantum technology. They improve the cybersecurity of operational communication networks by applying wire speed encryption suitable for real-time applications. It is designed to meet the stringent access & transport networks requirements for real time application in Mission-Critical Systems (MCS). The solution address industries includes Utilities, Oil and Gas, Rail and land transport, Air Traffic Management, Public safety, and Police-border control.

They provide:

  • LSPsec end-to-end service encryption against cyber-attacks in packet-based transport networks (MPLS-TP)
  • Integrated QRNG for the Quantum-Safe user data encryption.
  • Crypto agile long-term protection
  • Deterministic performance
  • Accurate time synchronization
  • Ultra-low latency and jitter

Hitachi-IDQ SECU1 and SENC1 encryption cards

SECU1 and SENC1 solutions in Hitachi Energy’s MPLS-TP-based wide area communication networks improve the security of operational networks. By using the SECU1 encryption card in the XMC20, or the SENC1 encryption card in the FOX615, MPLS-TP networks can be operated securely in a node.

QRNG function in Hitachi Energy’s SECU1 and SENC1 encryption cards

Encryption is only as secure as the random numbers generated and the key it‘s accessed with. To maintain confidentiality and integrity in communications securely, the encryption technology is particularly important for the operators of mission-critical communication networks. Conventional mathematical keys are often not sufficient to guarantee adequate protection.

Hitachi Energy chose ID Quantique for its crypto expertise to co-develop the SECU1 and SENC1 encryption cards, which ensure uncompromising real-time performance and Quantum-Safe security. They rely on IDQ’s QRNG chip (IDQ6MC1) as the source for the symmetrical and asymmetrical cryptographic key generation. The basis for the trustworthy and protected distribution of keys is provided by a centralized and decentralized generation of keys. There is no single-point-of-failure and all nodes can securely communicate with one another. This Hitachi Permanent Encryption method prevents the creation of so-called network islands.

The SECU1 and SENC1 LSPsec technologies encrypt individual LSPs (Label Switched Path) end-to-end natively at Layer 2.5 in an MPLS-TP transport network. The cards provide highly secure end-to-end encryption for mission-critical networks and ensure very high data availability without compromising real-time applications. Encryption and authentication are realized using the currently most secure encryption method available, which is also recommended by the BSI (German Federal Office for Information Security) and can be updated if required due to its Crypto-Agile approach.

Furthermore, the encryption solution supports IDQ’s Quantum Key Distribution (QKD). The optional QKD system ensures true long-term protection, allowing organizations to be agile and ready for the quantum computing era.

Read more about the use case

Hitachi-IDQ QRNG and QKD mission-critical network

Future-proofing Mission-Critical Systems (MCS) networks

Hitachi Energy addresses the evolution of MCS networks from TDM-based to packet-based services with their state-of-the-art full hybrid multi-service platforms XMC20 and FOX615. The full hybrid concept allows for the co-existence of native TDM and packet-based access services within the same node, providing a perfect future-proof solution for MCS applications.

Hitachi Energy believes that nothing is more important in MCS networks than guaranteeing the highest availability of each connection and the highest security for transferred data against attacks from outside. With mission-critical data, downtime and manipulation can mean risk to life and limb.

Hitachi Energy and IDQ’s joint solution can be integrated into an existing network without making any changes in the infrastructure. It allows customers to build dynamic modern MPLS-based critical infrastructure networks while ensuring public safety for the long-term thanks to quantum technology.

Hitachi Encryption-of-packet-based-applications

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