The paper proposes algorithmic and environmental modifications to the extant reconciliation algorithms within the BB84 protocol so as to speed up reconciliation and privacy amplification. These algorithms have been known to be a performance bottleneck 1 and can process data at rates that are six times slower than the quantum channel they serve2. As improvements in single-photon sources and detectors are expected to improve the quantum channel throughput by two or three orders of magnitude, it becomes imperative to improve the performance of the classical software. We developed a Cascade-like algorithm that relies on a symmetric formulation of the problem, error estimation through the segmentation process, outright elimination of segments with many errors, Forward Error Correction, recognition of the distinct data subpopulations that emerge as the algorithm runs, ability to operate on massive amounts of data (of the order of 1 Mbit), and a few other minor improvements. The data from the experimental algorithm we developed show that by operating on massive arrays of data we can improve software performance by better than three orders of magnitude while retaining nearly as many bits (typically more than 90%) as the algorithms that were designed for optimal bit retention.© (2004) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.