Cybernetica and TalTech to collaborate in researching digital signature for the future

Cybernetica will collaborate with Tallinn University of Technology in a joint industrial PhD, which will produce research into future digital signatures.

One of the core components of the Estonian e-state is a strong digital identity and the possibility to sign documents and confirm transactions digitally. Investment into research that will help future proof services of critical importance is crucial. This research will develop new technologies similar, for example, to SplitKey, which is currently used in the Smart-ID service. Part of the research also focuses on the resilience of digital signatures for quantum computing in the future.

The Head of Cybernetica’s Information Security Research Institute, Dan Bogdanov, said that while the digital signature today is cryptographically strong, it is necessary to prepare for the future and changes coming with quantum computing. “Quantum computers are not yet a threat to the cryptography used for the Estonian digital identity today. However, in Cybernetica we have always focused on developing technologies for the future and we must face any upcoming issues already today. Cryptographic keys are the presumption for the security of any system and cryptographic protection for the keys similar to SplitKey is a fast developing area,” explained Bogdanov.

Professor Rain Ottis of the TalTech Centre for Digital Forensics and Cyber Security said that industrial PhD research has a direct positive impact on both the Estonian science but also business sectors. “On the one hand scientists can contribute towards solving with wider socio-economic issues, and on the other hand, the ability of research-intensive Estonian companies offering high added value to succeed in the global market is growing,” said Ottis.

The research will be carried out by Nikita Snetkov, junior researcher at Cybernetica, and supervised by professor Ahto Buldas from TalTech and Jan Willemson, senior researcher at Cybernetica.

Cybernetica is a research intensive company known for developing and maintaining the core technologies of the Estonian e-state, including an in-house research institute with a long history. Cybernetica collaborates both with TalTech and the University of Tartu for industrial PhD positions.

Tallinn University of Technology is the leader in Estonian technology and IT education and a pathfinder for a sustainable digital future, offering degrees in all levels in engineering and technology, IT, economy, natural and maritime sciences. The strength of TalTech lies in synergy between different fields, internationalisation, and academic activities directed at producing a practical outcome.