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TECHNOLOGY OVERVIEW

What is AKT - Anonymous Key Technology®?

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ANONYMOUS KEY TECHNOLOGY

Anonymous Key Technology (AKT) can be described as the evolutionary combination of traditional security technologies. Security experts like to see traditional technologies that are well understood and accepted. AKT uses traditional cryptographic algorithms like Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), the secure hash standard and traditional key management like Key Encrypting Keys and Data Encrypting Keys. AKT’s unique methodology provides a simple authentication system that delivers secure data transmissions based on the results of the authentication.

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KEY STRENGTH

The strength of AKT depends on the size of the key and the amount of randomness in the key. For example, an 8-character password formed only from upper letter characters has a strength equivalency of just over 30 bits. If you allow upper and lowercase characters, then the strength increases to about 45 bits. To get 80 bits of strength with a password using upper and lowercase characters only, you need a password with about 14 characters. Thus, a password of 14 characters is equivalent in strength to PKI using 1024 bit keys (current Secure Socket Layer (SSL). Therefore, it is not appropriate to ask what the strength of AKT is without specifying the size and randomness of the key. This is where the confusion arises with people who are steeped in PKI. If you integrate outside randomness into the AKT key, then you can achieve strength much greater than PKI. For example, using biometrics, you can get very high strength. Currently, a Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) certification mandates a maximum strength using AES of 256 bits, which is the maximum strength that can be obtained and still receive certification.

WHAT DOES A STRENGTH OF 80 BITS MEAN?

80 bits of strength means that the difficulty in guessing the encryption key is equivalent to guessing 80 bits of random data. Guessing the key would be equivalent to guessing a number with 24 digits! Keep in mind that as computers get faster, guessing a large number gets less difficult. For example, Table 1.0 shows the results of a computer that can do one billion decryptions and comparisons (a transaction) per second:


Table 1.0 Computer/ One Billion Transactions​



It is clear from Table 1 that a key with 80 bits of strength will survive less than 1 hour. Keep in mind that 1 billion transactions per second is difficult with any computer. However, notice that if you can get a strength of 112 bits, it would take the same computer just over 3 years (on average) to break the same encryption! At 160 bits, you do not need to worry. While a strength of 80 bits is susceptible to heavy attack, when you get to 160 bits and above, it takes a lot of computer power to break the AKT suite.

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Securing Data at Rest

Laptop computers and cell phones have become mobile stores of massive amounts of information. Add to that the proliferation of removable hard drives, and it becomes crystal clear how much sensitive data is on the move in the world, most of it woefully under protected.

Total Encryption

ShieldMe365 gives you the defenses you need to protect your sensitive data and communications wherever it lives — on endpoints, in the cloud or on-premise. Its powerful encryption technology is secured with the patented Anonymous Key Technology (AKT) to help you secure financial records, intellectual property, personally identifying information and other sensitive data with our user-friendly apps.

Accreditation

Using a FIPS 140-2 validated cryptographic module, along with the patented AKT technology, every transaction can be unique and has a defacto bi-directional authentication, done at both the server and the client.

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Anonymous Key Technology

How it All Started.

The technology that drives the ShieldMe365 applications was born in 1996 when the ISP owned by Dr. Lynn Spraggs and his son Robert was hacked. They had employed traditional security measures to ensure that their data was safe, but the hacker had easily beaten the systems that were in place. Seizing the opportunity, they tracked the hacker down and learned the truth. After extensive research into the problem, they soon realized that the existing Internet security technologies were not only filled with holes, they also would not easily scale to large numbers of users. From that small realization, they built the patented Anonymous Key Technology that is the base for all the ShieldMe365 products that you see on this site.

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