Whitfield Diffie and Martin Hellman, authors o...

Whitfield Diffie and Martin Hellman, authors of the first published paper on public-key cryptography (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We are very much familiar with the Diffie – Hellman idea of secret exchange. It was surely a revolution in the field of information security and modern cryptography. This idea also in some sense led to the invention of many of the existing public-key systems including RSA and ElGamal systems.

But here is a story that tells such a remarkable idea was invented much before the invention of RSA or any other public – key system. It is about the cryptographers and mathematicians of the GCHQ who, the GCHQ claims to have invented systems similar to RSA much before the one’s published by Rivest, Shamir and Adleman. Here is the story.