IT major IBM last week said it patent for a data encryption technique that is expected to enhance data privacy and strengthen cloud computing security.
The fully homomorphic encryption could enable unrestricted analysis of encrypted information –intentionally scrambled data — without surrendering confidentiality.
IBM in a statement said the new solution has the potential to advance cloud computing privacy and security by enabling vendors to perform computations on client data, such as analyzing sales patterns, without exposing or revealing the original data.
IBM’s homomorphic encryption technique solves a mathematical puzzle that confounded scientists since the invention of public-key encryption over 30 years ago.
The new solution was invented by IBM cryptography Researcher Craig Gentry. IBM says the fully homomorphic encryption uses a mathematical object known as an ideal lattice that allows people to interact with encrypted data in ways previously considered impossible.
The breakthrough facilitates analysis of confidential encrypted data without allowing the user to see the private data, yet it will reveal the same detailed results as if the original data was completely visible.
“Our patented invention has the potential to pave the way for more secure cloud computing services – without having to decrypt or reveal original data,” said Craig Gentry, IBM Researcher and co-inventor on the patent. “Fully homomorphic encryption will enable companies to confidently share data and overcome challenges or take advantage of emerging opportunities.”
IBM invests more than $6 billion annually in R&D and consistently explores new approaches to cloud computing that will deliver a competitive advantage to the company and its clients.