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21

I sent an email to Ron Rivest and got an answer back. The digits of $\pi$ are used as a sort of random number generator that is used in the Durstenfeld shuffle (see also Knuth vol 3, sec 3.4.2). Below is some pseudocode adapted from the description and code he sent me. S = [0, 1, ..., 255] digits_Pi = [3, 1, 4, 1, 5, 9, ...] # the digits of pi def ...


17

In 1911, there was no computer either. With much more modest goals of security for the next few months, the German army came up with the Enigma, which was broken. Before the 1970s, cryptography was essentially a military-only domain, so there were no "openly collaborating knowledgeable experts". The situation was qualitatively different. So it is a bit ...


12

What methods would they use? Since WW2, we know the security of Enigma machines was weakened by the reflector, resulting in two problems: No difference between en- and decryption, which means that if K ↦ T, then T ↦ K. No letter can be encrypted by itself because electricity can not travel the same way back, which results in a reduction of encryption ...


9

It really depends on how you define the problem. The One-Time-Pad was invented in 1882, so a well designed storage scheme using a OTP would probably still be secure today. The Vigenère cipher is basically a OTP that uses a caesar shift over the letter determined by some key. In practice these keys were often letters or rare books. A small subset of ...


7

It looks like with no leakage or errors, Enigma is still secure. Quoting http://www.enigmaathome.net/: Enigma@Home is a wrapper between BOINC and Stefan Krah's M4 Project. 'The M4 Project is an effort to break 3 original Enigma messages with the help of distributed computing. The signals were intercepted in the North Atlantic in 1942 and are ...


5

there is a full breakdown of key size on this site to sum up if all rotor combinations are included then you have a possible $3*10^{114}$ possible keys however that didn't happen (the operators would need to keep $\frac{26!}{26}=1.5*10^{25}$ rotors at hand if they didn't allow repeats) by selecting $3$ out of the existing $5$ rotors you have 60 ...


5

The paper you link to in your comment is a fictional paper where the author (inspired by experiences with reviews he got for his own papers) imagines how negative reviews to groundbreaking papers could have looked like. So its just fun ;) AFAIK the RSA paper has never been rejected (but the very first paper of Ralph Merkle on public key crypto got rejected, ...


5

Prompted by Paŭlo's comment, I took a look at the original requirements set out for the AES candidates. A useful page for that turns out to be AES - The Early Years (1997-98) on the NIST web site (and surprisingly hard to find there; the internal links are broken and Google doesn't find it either). The AES key lengths were specified in the original Request ...


4

A problem with this message is that the image in a press release from GCHQ differs slightly from one in a New York Times article, although the paper, with its tears looks the same. The image below shows the two side by side, the one on the left from the NY Times and the right from GCHQ. There is a slight difference in the style of writing, i.e. more sloping ...


3

I believe that the key lies in the final 6 number 1525/6. In this period the German Mathematician Albrecht DÜRER published "The Four Books on Measurement" the third of which picks up on the geometric construction of the latin alphabet. Albrecht DÜRER was also famous for a magic square which is the same as Sudoko puzzles and would therefore have the ...


3

I think the first paragraph of this document show be helpful. The Rabin reference at the bottom of the text is from 1978, and the impression I get from p3 of this document is that he came up with a linear iterated hash function in that 1978 paper. So maybe Rabin invented it. I think we can be pretty sure it was either Merkle, Rabin or Yuval (if you must ...


3

I won't answer your question up to every detail, as I would have to write a book to answer the pretty broad question to full length. But I'll give you some hints as it would be wrong to let you think that non-military cryptography has appeared in 50's and 60's only thanks to leaks from the NSA! Before the 30's… One of the earliest descriptions of ...


3

In the context of encryption schemes, the key is whatever piece of information the legitimate recipient of an encrypted message possesses, which allows him to decrypt the ciphertext efficiently. Hence, the key must be kept hidden from an attacker, since otherwise the attacker could decrypt efficiently just as the legitimate recipent does.


2

No, the idea is much older. Don't trust the movie too far, Turing actually searched for the word "eins" (one) because it was the most common number used. Far more likely to appear than "Heil Hitler" but it doesn't make good screen drama.


2

From the 40s through 60s, civilian encryption simply wasn't a pressing need for the world of its day. Digital communications networks didn't exist, so manual cryptosystems like book codes sufficed for most commercial operations. International transactions were carried by voice over long distance lines, not by machines. Hebern and other rotor machines ...


2

The history of RSA is that somebody working for British intel created something like it a few years earlier than the MIT guys who published publicly. Unfortunately for him, his work was so good that it was classified and kept secret until much later. That's the opposite of a leak, so your answer is no. Historically, cryptography was far less sophisticated ...


2

If the school has graduate courses that interest you and you think you can do well in (i.e. for comprehensive exams), and there is a strong crypto research group there, I would recommend any school that satisfied these criteria. As you move through academics, it becomes more and more clear that the quality of your research is the most important, and it is ...


1

Most ciphers — both classical and modern — will work just fine with any key. It's just that, if the key used to dechipher the message does not match1 the key used to encipher it, the output will be essentially nonsense, and the actual intended message will not be revealed. (Some encryption systems may then detect that the decrypted text is ...


1

I personally have always seen a key used for encryption as a key used in a door, I never compared it to a keystone. But i think it is fair to compare it to a key with which you open a door. Since a key in cryptographic sense give you access to data or even to complete systems. Further more a keystone in the sense that a key is needed to make it work is not ...


1

fkraiem's definition is too narrow. $\:$ "In the context of encryption schemes," keys are "whatever piece of information the legitimate recipient of an encrypted message possesses, which allows him to decrypt the ciphertext" and any information related to keys of the type mentioned above, which allows its possessor to encrypt the plaintext .


1

Wikipedia gives an answer although it provides no reference. The Bazeries cylinder was a relatively strong system at the time (compared to many other systems in use), and Etienne Bazeries, a competent but very opinionated man, is said to have regarded it as indecipherable. In fact, it is hardly impregnable, and the "Pers z" code-breaking group of the ...


1

In principle even a one time pad isn't unbreakable if the pad is a short sequence that is repeated. If that were the case then a brute force search comparing each output message with the statistical likelihood of that message existing in English should yield an answer. Seems that we really need to know more about the encryption methods that may have been ...



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