Faces of Modern Cryptography

New Frontiers in Cryptography: Lattices and Leakage Resistance



Faces of Modern Cryptography is a series of one-day conferences held under the auspices of the Center for Algorithms and Interactive Scientific Software (CAISS), a research center of The City College of New York, CUNY.  This year the conference will focus on two areas that have recently come to the forefront of research in the field: lattice-based cryptography and leakage-resilient cryptography.

In the past few years, lattice-based cryptography has originated some very surprising results.  Notable examples include the first fully homomorphic encryption scheme, as well as new techniques for identity-based encryption.  Furthermore, the underlying hardness assumptions upon which these systems are built often have average-case complexity that is provably as stringent as their worst-case complexity.  This worst-case-to-average-case connection makes for a strong argument for the cryptographic applicability of lattice-based assumptions and qualifies them as promising alternatives to current number-theoretic techniques. Furthermore, no quantum attacks are known against commonly used lattice problems.  This contrasts with the state of affairs for number-theoretic assumptions, and might be an important consideration for the long term.

Leakage resilient cryptography addresses a more practical, but equally important problem in cryptography. Some of the most dangerous threats to cryptographic protocols come not from direct attacks on the mathematics of the scheme, but rather from attacks on specific implementation details. These “side-channel” attacks are often very effective, and the number of them in the literature has proliferated greatly as of late. Leakage-resilient cryptography provides a theoretical foundation to address and cope with these attacks.

This one-day conference features five, 50-minute research talks by leading international experts on these two topics.


Nelly Fazio and William E. Skeith III