CMSC/Math 456, Cryptology, Fall 2011: Tue, Thu
Office: AVW 3263, Phone: 301-405-2695
Instructor's office Hours: Thu 2:45-4:45 PM in AVW 3263
TA: Arun Balasubramanian, arunb.umd AT gmail.com.
TA's office Hours: Wed, Fri 2:30-3:30PM in AVW 1112 or 1114
Course Time and Location: Tue, Thu
9:30-10:45AM, CSIC 2107
Introduction to Modern Cryptography
by Jonathan Katz and Yehuda Lindell; see also the
Cryptology is the study of the design and analysis of various
encryption schemes, and related topics. The plan is to study the
basics of the subject and then touch on several recent developments.
Grading: Homework 30%, Two Midterm Tests (30% total), Final: 40%.
Homework should be stapled and submitted on time; late homework will not
be accepted. Your lowest homework score will be dropped.
- The first mid-term will be held in class on October 13th;
the second mid-term will be held in class on November 17th.
- Class participation is strongly encouraged;
students are urged to come to the office hours if they have questions, and
can also email Aravind to setup alternative times if they cannot attend the
regular office hours.
- Reading the textbook is important; the list of sections
to read is available here.
- A few lectures will be rescheduled (or covered by
guest lectures) during Aravind's travel, and a few office hours may
be canceled. (Again, students are welcome to setup alternative
meeting-times by email.)
- Homework 1, due Sep. 15th.
- Homework 2, due Sep. 27th.
- Homework 3, due Oct. 6th.
- Homework 4, due Oct. 27th.
- Homework 5, due Nov. 8th.
- Homework 6, due Dec. 13th. (Problem 2 updated on Dec. 8th.)
The following is a tentative syllabus.
Chapter numbers refer to the table of contents available here.
- Classical vs. modern cryptography; some historical ciphers; principles of modern cryptography.
- Perfectly-secret encryption. (Chapter 2.)
- Computational security. Symmetric-key encryption. (Chapter 3.)
- Message authentication and hash functions. (Chapter 4.)
- Block ciphers. (Chapter 5.)
- Theoretical constructions. (Sections 6.1, 6.2.)
- Number theory; cryptographic hardness assumptions and their applications. (Chapter 7.)
- The public-key revolution; Diffie-Hellman key exchange. (Chapter 9.)
- Public-key encryption. (Chapter 10.)
- Digital signatures. (Chapter 12.)
- The random oracle model and efficient cryptographic schemes. (Chapter 13.)
- As time permits, we will cover some advanced topics.
Students are strongly encouraged to complete their course evaluations;
please do so at the CourseEvalUM
Mid-Terms and Final Exam
The mid-terms and final exam will be closed-book and closed-notes;
other computing equipment will not be permitted.
Mid-term I will be held in class on Oct. 13, and
Mid-term II will be held in class on Nov. 17.
The chapters from the textbook for the first mid-term are:
The chapters from the textbook for the second mid-term are:
- Chapter 1;
- All of Chapter 2 EXCEPT Section 2.4;
- All of Chapter 3 EXCEPT Section 3.2.2; and
- Sections 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3.
According to the university schedule, the final exam will be in
class 8-10 AM on Friday, December 16th; the full list of book-sections
to read for the final is here.
- Sections 4.4, 4.5, and 4.6.
- Only Construction 4.15 from Sec. 4.7.1 (proof not necessary).
- Chapter 5: pages 159-165 only.
- Sections 6.1 and 6.2.
- Section 7.1 (EXCEPT for Section 7.1.5); and
- Section 7.2.1.
See the university's policy on medically-necessitated absence from class. The
"Major Scheduled Grading Events" for this course are the mid-term and
final exams; students claiming an excused absence from these events
must apply in writing and furnish documentary support (such as from a
health-care professional who treated
the student) for any assertion that the absence qualifies as an excused
absence. The support should explicitly indicate the dates or times the
student was incapacitated due to illness. Self-documentation of illness
is not itself sufficient support to excuse the absence. An instructor
is not under obligation to offer a substitute assignment or to give a
student a make-up assessment unless the failure to perform was due to
an excused absence.
Academic Accommodations for Disabilities
Any student eligible for and requesting reasonable academic accommodations
due to a disability is requested to provide, to the instructor in office
hours, a letter of accommodation from the Office of Disability Support
Services (DSS) within the first two weeks of the semester.
The University of Maryland, College Park has a nationally recognized
Code of Academic Integrity, administered by the Student Honor Council.
This Code sets standards for academic integrity at Maryland for all
undergraduate and graduate students. As a student you are responsible
for upholding these standards for this course. It is very important for
you to be aware of the consequences of cheating, fabrication,
facilitation, and plagiarism. For more information on the Code of
Academic Integrity or the Student Honor Council, please visit
To further exhibit your commitment to academic integrity, remember to
sign the Honor Pledge on all examinations and assignments: "I pledge on
my honor that I have not given or received any unauthorized assistance
on this examination (assignment)."
A Useful Cryptology Link
David Wagner's posts on cryptography