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Cryptanalysis – a never-ending story

There are many examples of attacks which exploit weaknesses of the underlying cryptographic primitives. So when can we trust cryptography? A talk by Anne Canteaut, one of UiB's 10 new honorary doctors.

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The lecture is in English.

Cryptanalysis - a neverending story

Cryptographic primitives, like encryption schemes and hash functions are the core of most security applications.

But the trust that users place in these algorithms has been repeatedly violated. There are many examples of attacks which exploit weaknesses of the underlying cryptographic primitives. So when can we trust cryptography? It should be clear that we cannot trust algorithms which do not have public design rationale and which have not been thoroughly studied. Most notably, the primitives recommended by the cryptographic community are those which have been chosen after an international competition.

Within such an open contest, all proposals have been carefully analyzed by all participants; their security margins have been evaluated. This ongoing cryptanalytic effort is the only reliable security argument to consider when deciding which primitive to trust.