The project

Why post-quantum cryptography?

Cryptography is the cornerstone for securing data and digital exchanges. It is omnipresent in our everyday life, in web and mobile networks, chip cards, identity documents, embedded systems in aeronautics, transport, and connected devices («Internet-of-Things»). The coming of a quantum computer, that relies on different physical concepts, threatens most of those applications. Henceforth, substantial technical developments change must occur over the following years. These changes must guarantee to those fields an acceptable and lasting level of security and ensure digital exchange confidentiality and user privacy.

The RISQ project applies to every field of technology employing cryptographic methods.
Initiatives predicting this technical change (development of standards, prototyping) have been observed in other countries.
The outcome of this project will include an exhaustive encryption and transaction signature product line, as well as an adaptation of the TLS protocol.
Hardware and software cryptographic solutions meeting these constraints in terms of security and embedded integration will also be included.
Furthermore, documents guiding industrials on the integration of these post-quantum technologies into complex systems (defense, cloud, identity and payment markets) will be produced, as well as reports on the activities of standardization committees.

Turning France into a significant international player in the post-quantum transition.

In 2016, several organizations worldwide, notably the American NIST, have announced a call for the creation of new cryptographic standards, the mastery of which is key to entering prominent markets.

The great digital challenge RISQ aims at turning France into a significant international player in the post-quantum transition. One of RISQ’s objective is to strengthen the presence of the French digital security industry among standardization bodies by regrouping national players recognized worldwide. This consortium includes major industrial groups, SMEs and midcaps, government agencies, academic laboratories, in order to concert their actions regarding standards proposals and candidate evaluations. The project also defines a roadmap for the marketing of post-quantum security product lines – software and hardware cryptographic computation libraries, archiving and timestamp servers – ranging from the design of theoretical building blocks by the partner laboratories to the development and validation of demonstrators. The presence of large groups within the consortium guarantees the adaptability of the developed solutions to the systems deployed at the present time.

At the end of this project, the partners will have the intellectual property and the offers in advance to gain an early visibility on the markets derived from the new standards, of which the first are expected in 2019/2020.

Thus, the RISQ project foresees French stakeholders, through a regrouping of their best competencies, taking part in the elaboration of standards, developing the necessary technology and intellectual property in advance, evaluating and setting up migration processes, to make the French industry reactive to this technological change. Considering the paramount importance of this project, several major industrials wish to take part at their own expense.