As quantum key distribution becomes a mature technology, it appears clearly that some assumptions made in the security proofs cannot be justified in practical implementations. This might open the door to possible side-channel attacks. We examine several discrepancies between theoretical models and experimental setups in the case of continuous-variable quantum key distribution. We study in particular the impact of an imperfect modulation on the security of Gaussian protocols and show that approximating the theoretical Gaussian modulation with a discrete one is sufficient in practice. We also address the issue of properly calibrating the detection setup, and in particular the value of the shot noise. Finally, we consider the influence of phase noise in the preparation stage of the protocol and argue that taking this noise into account can improve the secret key rate because this source of noise is not controlled by the eavesdropper.
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