Colloquium Presentation "Automating Cryptanalysis - Tools and Techniques for Assessing the Security of Cryptographic Primitives" By: Dr. Maria Eichlseder

Friday, March 1, 2024 - 11:00 to 12:00
The School of Computer Science at the University of Windsor is pleased to present…

Automating Cryptanalysis - Tools and Techniques for Assessing the Security of Cryptographic Primitives

Speaker: Dr. Maria Eichlseder

Dr. Maria Eichlseder Headshot

Date: Friday, March 1st, 2023 

Time: 11:00 am – 12:00 pm

Location: Erie Hall Room 3123



Cryptography is the mathematical backbone of information security.

Cryptographic algorithms protect the confidentiality and authenticity of sensitive data by relying on the security of cryptographic primitives.

However, the security level of these primitives cannot be formally proven - we can only evaluate it by extensive dedicated cryptanalysis, where we aim to identify the best attacks on a primitive and accurately estimate their computational complexity. In this talk, I will show how automated solvers, such as SAT/SMT or MILP solvers, have become indispensable tools for cryptanalysts in recent years. With their help, we can systematically search for improved attacks and efficiently evaluate potential countermeasures. I will discuss the core ideas for formally modelling cryptanalytic attacks and point out current challenges and open questions.


Keywords: Cryptography, cryptanalysis, satisfiability, mixed-integer linear programming



Maria Eichlseder is an assistant professor of Cryptography at Graz University of Technology. Her research interests include the design and cryptanalysis of symmetric cryptographic algorithms, such as hash functions and authenticated encryption algorithms and their underlying primitives. She co-designed Ascon, a lightweight authenticated cipher that was selected by NIST as the new standard for lightweight cryptography in 2023. She defended her Ph.D. sub auspiciis praesidentis in 2018 and visited Ruhr-Universität Bochum and Radboud University Nijmegen as a guest researcher. She has received several awards for her work, including the Hedy Lamarr Award 2023.