Super stealthy Internet messaging method revealed

Princeton University researchers have devised a way to send undetectable messages over fiber-optic networks

A pair of Princeton University researchers presented a paper this week on a method for sending secret messages over existing public fiber-optic networks.

Princeton's Bernard Wu and Evgenii Narimanov made their presentation at the annual Optical Society of America meeting in Rochester, N.Y.

Their encryption technology is hardware-oriented and uses the properties of optical fiber to disguise a message. The technique involves sending a signal so faint that it is hard to detect or unscramble, because it is hidden by the natural optical noise of the network.

More specifically, the technique involves use of commercially available optical CDMA encoders that spread short, intense pulses of light carrying messages. The recipient decodes the message using information about how the message was spread out in the first place, plus compression gear.

Wu said in a statement that he does not believe anyone is using this method yet, because optical CDMA technology is still undergoing much research. He also said there could be a speed tradeoff for increased security.

The paper presented is called "Achieving Secure Stealth Transmission via a Public Fiber-Optical Network."

As with any supersecret network technology, the benefits to companies and government agencies would need to be weighed against the benefits criminals could gain from a way of sending undetectable messages.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Network World staff

Network World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Shining a light on creativity

MSI has long pushed the boundaries of invention with its ever-evolving range of laptops but it has now pulled off a world first with the new MSI Creative 17.

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?