Preface to IACR CRYPTO: Advances in Cryptology (CRYPTO) 2013

CRYPTO 2013, the 33rd Annual International Cryptology Conference, was held August 18-22 2013, on the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara. The event was sponsored by the International Association for Cryptologic Research (IACR) in cooperation with the UCSB Computer Science Department and the IEEE Computer Society's Technical Committee on Security and Privacy.

The program represents the recent significant advances in all areas of cryptology. Sixty one papers were included in the program, a record number for IACR flagship conferences. This two-volume proceedings contains the revised versions of all the papers. One pair of papers shared a single presentation slot in the program. There were also two invited talks. On Monday, Cindy Cohn from the Electronic Frontier Foundation gave a talk entitled "Crypto Wars Part 2 Have Begun." On Wednesday, Adam Langley from Google spoke about "Why the Web Still Runs on RC4," in a joint session with CHES 2013. To accommodate the increase in the number of papers, sessions were held throughout Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. The rump session took place as usual on Tuesday evening, and was chaired by Dan Bernstein and Tanja Lange.

For the Best Paper Award, the PC unanimously selected the paper "On the Function Field Sieve and the Impact of Higher Splitting Probabilities" by Faruk Gologlu, Robert Granger, Gary McGuire and Jens Zumbragel.

This year we also awarded a Best Young-Author Paper Award. To be eligible for the award, all authors of the paper had to either be full time students or have received their PhDs in 2011 or later. The award was given to the paper "Counter-cryptanalysis: reconstructing Flame's new variant collision attack" by Marc Stevens. Faced with a large number of high-quality submissions, the Program Committee decided to significantly increase the number of papers in the program from last year's 48 papers, at the price of making the program longer and keeping the paper presentations short (20 minutes per paper, including questions and answers). Another option that was seriously considered was to move to parallel sessions on some of the days of the conference. This would have allowed for somewhat longer paper presentations, and an early adjourn on Thursday. In the end, we opted to retain the single-session format, with the hope of keeping the community more unified by allowing participants to attend all talks.

The papers were reviewed by a Program Committee consisting of 40 leading researchers in the field, in addition to the two co-chairs. Each PC member was allowed to submit one paper, plus an additional one if co-authored with a student. PC-authored papers were held to higher standards during the review process. Papers were reviewed in a double-blind fashion. Initially, each paper was assigned to three reviewers (four for PC-authored papers). During the discussion phase, when necessary, extra reviews were solicited. As part of the paper discussion phase we held a 2-day PC meeting on May 2nd and 3rd, at the AT&T building in downtown Manhattan.

We strived to ensure that all papers received a fair and objective evaluation by experts as well as a broader group of PC members. The final decisions were made based on the reviews and discussion, and taking other factors such as balance of the program into account.

This year we initiated an early review and rebuttal process, where authors received preliminary reviews on their submissions about midway through the review period, and were given the option to comment on the reviews within a window of several days. The authors' comments were then taken into account in the discussions within the PC and the final reviews. This process was labor-intensive; however, we feel it was worthwhile, as it resulted in significantly better understanding of many submissions.

We would like to sincerely thank the authors of all submissions---those whose papers made it into the program and those whose papers did not. Our sincere gratitude also goes out to the Program Committee members, who have invested an incredible amount of work in reviewing papers, interacting with the authors via the rebuttal mechanism, and participating in so many discussions on papers, their contribution, and the state of the art in their fields of expertise. We also sympathize with the occasional frustration from seeing decisions go against personal recommendations and preferences, in spite of the hard work invested.

We are also indebted to the many external reviewers who significantly contributed to the comprehensive evaluation of papers. A list of PC members and external reviewers appears after this note. Despite all our efforts, the list of external reviewers may have errors or omissions; we apologize for that in advance.

We would like to thank Helena Handschuch, the General Chair, for working closely with us throughout the whole process, providing the much needed support in every step, including creating and maintaining the website, and taking care of all aspects of the conference's logistics.

Special thanks are due to Shai Halevi, who provided us with unlimited support of his websubrev software, which we used for the whole conference planning, paper evaluation, and interaction with PC members and authors. Josh Benaloh, was our IACR point of contact, always providing timely and informative answers to our questions. Alfred Hofmann and his colleagues at Springer provided a meticulous service for the timely production of this volume.

Finally, we would like to thank Qualcomm, Microsoft, Google, Good Technologies, and Cryptography Research Inc. for their generous support.

August 2013                    Ran Canetti and Juan A. Garay

                                       Program Co-chairs,
                                       CRYPTO 2013