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Post-Quantum Use In Protocols (pquip)

WG Name Post-Quantum Use In Protocols
Acronym pquip
Area Security Area (sec)
State Active
Charter charter-ietf-pquip-01 Approved
Document dependencies
Additional resources GitHub Organization
Grand list of WGs and protocols looking at PQC algorithms
Personnel Chairs Paul E. Hoffman, Sofia Celi
Area Director Paul Wouters
Mailing list Address
To subscribe
Chat Room address

Charter for Working Group

Some IETF protocols rely upon cryptographic mechanisms that are considered secure given today’s “classical computers” but would be vulnerable to attacks by a Cryptographically Relevant Quantum Computer (CRQC). These mechanisms rely upon algorithms based on integer factorization or the discrete logarithm problem. Outside of the IETF, active work is underway to develop and validate Post-Quantum Cryptography (PQC) mechanisms that are expected to be resilient to the cryptanalysis capabilities of future CRQCs (e.g., CFRG, US NIST). Select IETF WGs (e.g., LAMPS, TLS, IPSECME, COSE) have already begun standardizing revised protocol behaviors. The focus of Post-Quantum Use in Protocols (PQUIP) WG is to support this growing body of work in the IETF to facilitate the evolution of IETF protocols and document associated operational guidance with respect to PQC.

The WG will provide a standing venue to discuss PQC (operational and engineering) transition issues and experiences to date relevant to work in the IETF. The WG will also provide a venue of last resort to discuss PQC-related issues in IETF protocols that have no associated maintenance WGs. This WG will not update existing protocols, specify new protocols, define new cryptographic mechanisms, or assess whether a given cryptographic mechanism is quantum-resistant.

The WG will document operational and design guidance which supports PQC transition. The general process of elaboration through documentation will be for issues to be identified and discussed on the mailing list, and presentations made at WG meetings. When topics merit more coherent documentation, the WG will adopt documents to capture the information in Internet-Drafts. If the working group consensus is that the material of the Internet-Draft is generally useful for archival purposes, the WG will seek publication of the work items as Informational or Best Current Practices RFCs. At any point, from early discussion of topics through later documentation stages, the WG may identify a more appropriate WG for the matter, and with coordination, dispatch it there.

The output of this WG is expended to inform protocol work and guidance developed by other WGs in the IETF. Consistent with other IETF WGs, this WG will also rely on outside entities (e.g., CFRG) to define and assess new PQC mechanisms.

The IESG is establishing this working group on an experimental basis, and in 2 years, the IESG intends to review it for rechartering to continue or else closure.


Date Milestone Associated documents
May 2023 WG Adoption of an Informational document on ‘PQC for engineers’ draft-ietf-pquip-pqc-engineers
Apr 2023 WG Adoption of an Informational document that defines terminology for (hybrid) PQC schemes draft-ietf-pquip-pqt-hybrid-terminology