ATI / Studies / MTAT.07.006 Research Seminar in Cryptography

MTAT.07.006 Research Seminar in Cryptography
(3+3 AP = 4.5+4.5 ECTS)

Autumn 2008: Various Topics in Cryptography

[General Information] [Course description] [Course Organization] [Schedule] [Background] [OIS]

General Information

Focus for 2009

The next will be discussed during the first seminar. The seminar series will not have a concrete focus. Instead, various supervisors propose their topics for interested students. The supervisors mainly choose topics that are interesting for themselves, which in particular means that they are in most cases able to continue supervision also after the seminar to the end of a potential MSc (or BSc/PhD?) thesis. Such continuation is however not mandatory.

Students can also propose their own topics, but in this case they have to find a supervisor who is interested in supervision.

Some topics require previous knowledge of cryptography, but other topics will be accessible to students who take Crypto I in parallel (although, some independent work is to be expected in this case).

This course is obligatory for our NordSecMob master students. Everybody else is also more than welcome.

Signing up for the seminar

Fastest way: use OIS. If you do not manage - don't blame me, OIS was not programmed for human usage. (You probably have to email Ülle Holm who will then manually register you.)

Registered students:

Proposed Topics (sorted by supervisor)

For most of the topics, browse the corresponding section of Helger's Cryptopointers to find links to papers, surveys etc.

List of the supervisors follows. Click on the name of the supervisor for topics proposed by the concrete supervisor.

Helger Lipmaa

Dan Bogdanov

Presentation at first seminar

Dan Bogdanov has a number of topics related to the Sharemind framework for privacy-preserving computations (

efficient share computing protocols
Sharemind can compute things pretty quickly. But there might still be ways of making it faster or adding new protocols for operations. The student will have to understand how Sharemind protocols are built and will then have to design protocols for operations not supported by the virtual machine. > > * extending the Sharemind framework to the malicious model Currently Sharemind is perfectly secure in the honest-but curious model with three parties. It would be nice to have a plan for providing security in the malicious model without losing much of what we already have.
extending the Sharemind framework to more than three parties
Sharemind currently works with three computing nodes. Jan Willemson has proposed a multiplication protocol for any number of nodes. This protocol should be cleaned up and proven correct and secure. After that, the whole protocol suit of Sharemind should be revised to see, if everything can be extended to n parties.
automatic security proofs for share computing protocols (improvements for an existing system)
There is an existing protocol prover for Sharemind, but it has some flaws. Currently, it proves protocol security symbolically, but it should do also do a semantic analysis. The job of the student will be to pick up the prover and improve it.
privacy-preserving versions of data mining algorithms using the Sharemind framework.
There are a number of data mining algorithms written for the Sharemind framework, but there is room for more. Clustering, correlation analysis, you name it. The student will have to implement privacy-preserving versions of these algorithms, taking into account the somewhat different optimization profile of Sharemind.
practical aspects of developing privacy-preserving software
There is a number of issues related to the practical use of Sharemind. What kind of applications could we build? Are the real-life security guarantees any good? What are the downsides? How could we make the development of such applications easier? The topics are distributed on a first-come-first-served basis and some can only provide work for a single student. If you are interested, contact me for an up-to-date status.

Ahto Buldas

Peeter Laud

Sven Laur


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Previous years: [Autumn 2001 @TKK] [Autumn 2002 @TKK] [Autumn 2003 @TKK] [Autumn 2004 @TKK] [Autumn 2005 @Tartu] [Autumn 2008 @Tartu]

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