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Google launches new Adiantum data encryption method

(Image credit: Image Credit: Sergey Nivens / Shutterstock)

Google has announced a new low-cost new form of data encryption for mobile and smart devices. Called Adamantium, its goal is to make encryption more practical and simple.

Encryption is vital for data security in today’s world, Google argues. However, it is not always practical. Sometimes, encryption would slow down machines to the point of unusability, and that is something Google wants to solve.

It calls it a ‘new form of encryption’, designed to run on devices that don’t have specialised hardware. Google believes the next generation of devices will be more successful than the last one for it, especially things like smart watches, internet-connected medical devices, and similar gadgets.

Explaining the details in a blog post (opens in new tab), Google says Adamantium allows the use of the ChaCha stream cipher in a length-preserving mode, “by adapting ideas from AES-based proposals for length-preserving encryption such as HCTR and HCH”. I know, right?  

On ARM Cortex-A7, Adiantum encryption and decryption on 4096-byte sectors is roughly five times faster than AES-256-XTS.

“Our hope is that Adiantum will democratize encryption for all devices. Just like you wouldn’t buy a phone without text messaging, there will be no excuse for compromising security for the sake of device performance,” the company says.

“Everyone should have privacy and security, regardless of their phone’s price tag.”

Image Credit: Sergey Nivens / Shutterstock

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.