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Modern digital communication relies heavily on cryptographic protection to ensure data integrity and privacy. In order to deploy state-of-the art cryptographic primitives and protocols in real-world scenarios, one needs to highly optimize software for both speed and security. This requires careful choices of high-level cryptographic parameters, low-level optimization of software on the assembly level for a given microarchitecture and considerations of the subtle interactions between high-level and low-level optimizations. This thesis considers three examples of cryptographic primitives and describes software implementations of these primitives that set new speed records.
The Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) is one of the most widely used symmetric cryptographic primitives. The traditional implementation approach for AES is based on table lookups. While software based on this approach still achieves best performance for a variety of 32-bit and 64-bit architectures, it is usually vulnerable to cache-timing attacks. Another implementation approach for AES is the bitslic- ing technique. Not only is software based on this approach inherently protected against cache-timing attacks, on some microarchitectures it even achieves better performance.
Elliptic-curve cryptography is the current state of the art of asymmetric cryptography. For elliptic-curve Diffie-Hellman key exchange, Bernstein proposed the Curve25519 function. Several speed-record-setting implementations of this function have been developed for a variety of architectures. Optimizing Curve25519 software for the Synergistic Processor Units of the Cell Broadband Engine is a particularly interesting challenge because the small integer multipliers of this architecture do not seem to make it the best-suited platform for public-key cryptography.
Another use of elliptic curves in cryptography is in the construction of cryptographic pairings. In order to make pairings fas[...]
Starting from January 2012, the new Intel-TU Darmstadt Security Institute will conduct security research for mobile and embedded systems. The Security Institute will be jointly operated by Intel Labs and TU Darmstadt/Center for Advanced Security Research Darmstadt (CASED), Germany. In order to kick off operations, we are currently looking for scientific personnel.
Applicants should hold Diploma, Master or PhD Degree in Computer Science or Electrical Engineering and bring well-founded knowledge and experience in IT-Security. More specifically, we are looking for candidates that have expertise in one or more of the following areas:
How to Apply
Your application should include your current curriculum vitae, MSc/Diploma certificates and grades, a letter of motivation stating your interest in the position and your research interests and at least two letters of recommendation.
• Analysis of “real world” protocols
• Formal Methods applied to security protocols
• Fully Homomorphic Encryption
• Lattice Based Cryptography
• Multi-Party Computation
• Provable Security, i.e. Protocol and Mechanism design
The post is funded by an ERC Advanced Grant awarded to Professor Nigel Smart.