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Applied Cryptography



Fall 2017

This course presents sufficient number theory and algebra to describe common cryptographic systems. Course topics include the German Engima machine, DES, the RSA cryptosystem, discrete logarithms, the ElGamal cryptosystem, and possibly others. Students will use computer software to solve cryptography problems and will write their own software to handle some types of cryptography, cryptanalysis, etc. Mathematica may be used to solve some of the problems. Students will be asked to implement several cryptographic algorithms using C++ in Linux with the aid of the BigInt package. Some of these algorithm implementations might be done as group projects. Common applications of cryptography such as key distribution, digital signatures, and cryptocurrencies will also be studied, as well as some of the methods of attacking cryptosystems. Prerequisites: One course from the list CS 170, MA 109, MA 111 as well as one course from the list CS 110, CS 270. Offered fall semester alternate years (fall 2017). Three credits.

Further Information

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Note on Flu

Because of the possibility of the flu affecting us on campus, please practice good hand washing, etc. If a doctor will prescribe Tamiflu or similar for you, it is said that it reduces the length and the severity of the flu. If you get the flu, please notify me by phone or e-mail and stay home for 24 hours after the symptoms are over. Check with me about what you miss. You will not be penalized for missing class in this situtation. It is better to stay away from class and not spread the flu when you are ill.

Homework, Exams, Projects, etc.

  • See Schoology for most of this.
  • Final Exam
    • Thurs, Dec 14, 8:30 am - 10:30 am
    • Open book, open notes exam. Bring anything on paper that you wish.
    • Concentrates on topics since the midterm, though some earlier things may be needed to work on the new topics.
    • Thus some of the main topics are: finite fields, AES, RSA, Elgamal, Diffie-Helman key exchange, attacks and breaking various types of crypto, Bitcoin and blockchain, hash functions, digital signatures, and digital certificates. There may be a little elliptic curve crypto from the guest lecture as well.
    • You must bring a good hand calculator as one will be needed to answer some of the questions.
    • No phones, computers, or other devices can be used.

Instructor: Br. David Carlson



Maintained by: Br. David Carlson
Last updated: December 05, 2017
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