COMP0058 Applied Cryptography

This database contains the 2018-19 versions of syllabuses. These are still being finalised and changes may occur before the start of the session.

Syllabuses from the 2017-18 session are available here.

Academic session

2018-19

Module

Applied Cryptography

Code

COMP0058

Module delivery

1819/A7P/T2/COMP0058 Postgraduate

Related deliveries

1819/A7U/T2/COMP0058 Masters (MEng)

Prior deliveries

COMPGA12

Level

Postgraduate

FHEQ Level

L7

FHEQ credits

15

Term/s

Term 2

Module leader

Courtois, Nicolas

Contributors

Courtois, Nicolas

Module administrator

Bottomley, Samantha

Aims

Understanding how cryptography and security works in practice, and how it fails. Understanding attacks and vulnerabilities of major industrial standards. Study of real-life applications of encryption, Message Authentication Codes (MACs) and Digital Signatures in areas of telecom, government/identity, buildings/transportation, payment and crypto currency systems. Understanding the maths, the security design principles, the internal structure and important properties of major cryptosystems. Study of selected topics in cryptanalysis. Side­channel attacks and countermeasures.

Learning outcomes

Learning how security problems are solved in the industry, and understanding why specific choices are made. Understanding multiple ways to attack and defend in applied cryptography. Understanding the role of keyed operations, non-linearity, randomness, one-wayness, diffusion, side-channel vulnerabilities, permutations, security reductions, etc in cryptographic engineering. Understanding fraud crime and attacks in payment systems. Study or practical applications of digital signatures in electronic commerce, TLS and crypto currency. Understanding security (attacks and defences) in complex real­life systems and the role of keys, cryptographic algorithms and protocols, tamper resistant hardware and other types of countermeasures. Understanding different types of attacks (e.g. key recovery vs. decryption) and different security definitions.

Availability and prerequisites

This module delivery is available for selection on the below-listed programmes. The relevant programme structure will specify whether the module is core, optional, or elective.

In order to be eligible to select this module as optional or elective, where available, students must meet all prerequisite conditions to the satisfaction of the module leader. Places for students taking the module as optional or elective are limited and will be allocated according to the department’s module selection policy.

Programmes on which available:

  • MSc Information Security
  • MSc Information Security (Part time) (Year 1)
  • MSc Information Security (Part time) (Year 2)
  • MRes Financial Computing
  • MSc Crime and Forensic Science

Prerequisites:

There are no formal prerequisites

Content

The module covers the following:

  • Symmetric cryptography. Historical cryptanalysis since WW2 and Enigma. Block ciphers. Structural high-level and self-similarity attacks. Differential cryptanalysis, linear cryptanalysis, software and algebraic cryptanalysis.
  • Groups, finite fields. Number theory. Attacks on public key cryptosystems. RSA, factoring, discrete logarithms.
  • Public key cryptography. Elliptic Curve crypto and digital signatures.
  • Secure email/messaging, digital signatures, certificates. Electronic commerce, SSL/TLS, Forward Security, attacks on TLS.
  • Smart cards and cryptographic protocols. RFID technology, data and entity authentication, challenge-response. EMV Bank cards and terminals, security, fraud, attacks. E-passports.
  • Hardware Security and Side-channel attacks (timing, SPA, DPA and DFA). Side-channel attack countermeasures.
  • Financial cryptography, payment systems, blockchains and crypto currencies, bitcoin, stealth address techniques, ring signatures, monero, zerocash.

Labs: Exercises and programming with Sage Maths. Optional crypto implementation, crypto wallets and blockchain data exploration labs and projects.

Delivery

The module is delivered through a combination of lectures, labs and problem­solving sessions with SAGE maths, diverse study/analysis/exploratory/programming activities inside group code-breaking projects, and private study.

Assessment

This module delivery is assessed as below:

#

Title

Weight (%)

Notes

1

Moodle quiz (written examination - departmentally managed)

50

 

2

Code breaking competition group project

50

LSA assignment will be an extended essay.

In order to pass this module delivery, students must achieve an overall weighted module mark of 50%.