Fujitsu has announced the development of what it says is the world’s first homomorphic encryption technology which would allow biometric authentication and statistical calculations to be performed at high speeds without having to decrypt sensitive data.
According to the company, this represents a much safer approach to working with biometrics and, also greatly increases processing speeds from existing homomorphic encryption methods. Existing methods use bit-by-bit encryption, which greatly slows down speeds and makes its practical application challenging. Fujitsu’s new method orders bit strings of data and then batch-encrypts it so the inner product calculations can be performed at a batch level.
According to the company, this new method accelerates the processing speed by a factor of approximately 2,000.
“When encrypting two plain texts, this takes advantage of the characteristics of polynomial multiplication, reordering the bit string of one in ascending order, the other in descending order, and then converting both to polynomials, which makes it possible for inner products of encrypted bit strings to be calculated as a batch,” the company says.
A major benefit to a system like this is that biometric data can be compared, without having to decrypt it.
Fujitsu says it is moving forward with practical testing and is planning implementations in 2015.
Reported previously, Fujitsu recently boasted a related palm vein authentication technology using a similar batch method with 2,048-bit feature codes from vein images.
Earlier this year, Fujitsu launched what it says is the world’s smallest contactless vein authentication sensor.