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Selected Topics of Information Security and Cryptography
Seminar in Winter Term 2008/09

Organizatorial Meeting
Wednesday, October 22, 2008 at 16:15 in Room 407, Building E1.1
block seminar at the end of the term
Presentation Sessions
Friday, the 23rd of January in the MPI Building (E 1.4), Rotunda 6th Floor


The seminar addresses current research on information security and cryptography, both from a theoretical and a practical perspective.


The organizational meeting took place on Wednesday, October 22 and registration for the seminar is now closed. Guests are welcome during the presentation sessions.


There are no formal requirements for participation. Students should be familiar with basic topics in computer security and cryptography.

Participation in the organization meeting and all the presentation sessions is mandatory.

Requirements for obtaining credit points (Scheinvergabe)

The seminar requires both an individual contribution by every participant and a contribution achieved within a team of four people (formed by the speakers of each session).

As far as the individual part is concerned, each participant

The group part requires the team

You must submit (1) your team report as one LaTeX source and in PDF format, as well as (2) the final version of your slides, before the end of term. All team reports and presentation slides will be made available on this Web site.

Presentation Sessions

All presentation sessions will be held Friday, the 23rd of January.

Each presentation has been allocated 30 minutes. The length of each talk should be 25 minutes, while the remaining 5 minutes will be used for questions and comments. We would like this to be a seminar that participants can profit from, so the main emphasis of the talks must be on being understandable.

Additionally, after the talks of each session the team has allocated 15 minutes to present a list of potentially interesting, scientifically novel ideas, for discussing them in the class, and for identifying the most promising ideas on which the team could work on further.

Topics/Sessions and Papers

Topic 1: Authorization Logics


Topic 2: Rational Cryptography

Final Report: A Rational Secret Sharing Scheme Robust Against Malicious Players, by Nadja Altabari, Anton Krohmer, Hendrik Molter, and Thorsten Tarrach

  1. Bridging Game Theory and Cryptography: Recent Results and Future Directions. Jonathan Katz. Proceedings of the Fifth Theory of Cryptography Conference (TCC 2008), 2008. Speaker: Anton Krohmer (slides)

  2. Cryptography and Game Theory: Designing Protocols for Exchanging Information. Gillat Kol and Moni Naor. Proceedings of the Fifth Theory of Cryptography Conference (TCC 2008), 2008. Speaker: Hendrik Molter (slides)

  3. Lower Bounds on Implementing Robust and Resilient Mediators. Ittai Abraham and Danny Dolev and Joseph Y. Halpern. Proceedings of the Fifth Theory of Cryptography Conference (TCC 2008), 2008. Speaker: Nadja Altabari (slides)

  4. A Cryptographic Solution to a Game Theoretic Problem. Yevgeniy Dodis and Shai Halevi and Tal Rabin. Proceedings of the 20th International Cryptology Conference (Crypto 2000), 2000. Speaker: Thorsten Tarrach (slides)

Advisers: Oana Ciobotaru and Michael Backes

Topic 3: Side-channel Attacks

Final Report: Yes We Can: Uncovering Spoken Phrases in Encrypted VoIP Conversations, by Goran Doychev, Dominik Feld, Jonas Eckhardt, and Stephan Neumann

  1. Remote Timing Attacks are Practical. David Brumley and Dan Boneh. In Proc. 12th USENIX Security Symposium, 2003. Speaker: Jonas Eckhardt (slides)

  2. Hidden Markov Model Cryptanalysis. Chris Karlof and David Wagner. In Proc. Workshop on Cryptographic Hardware and Embedded Systems (CHES), 2003. Speaker: Stephan Neumann (slides)

  3. Spot me if you can: Uncovering spoken phrases in encrypted VoIP conversations. Charles Wright, Lucas Ballard, Scott Coull, Fabian Monrose, Gerald Masson. In Proc. IEEE SSP 2008. Speaker: Goran Doychev (slides)

  4. Timing Analysis of Keystrokes and Timing Attacks on SSH. Dawn Xiaodong, Song David Wagner, Xuqing Tian. Proc. of USENIX Security Symposium 2001. Speaker: Dominik Feld (slides)

Advisers: Boris Köpf and Markus Dürmuth

Topic 4: Observational Equivalence for Security Protocols

Final Report: Automated Checking of Observational Equivalence for an Extended Spi Calculus, by Georgel Calin, Markus Rabe, and Raphael Reischuk

  1. A Bisimulation Method for Cryptographic Protocols. Martín Abadi and Andrew D. Gordon. Nordic Journal of Computing, 1998. Speaker: Georgel Calin (slides)

  2. Automated Verification of Selected Equivalences for Security Protocols. Bruno Blanchet, Martín Abadi, and Cédric Fournet. Journal of Logic and Algebraic Programming, 2008. Speaker: Markus Rabe (slides)

  3. A Complete Symbolic Bisimilarity for an Extended Spi Calculus. Johannes Borgström. 6th International Workshop on Security Issues in Concurrency (SecCo'08), 2008. Speaker: Raphael Reischuk (slides)

  4. Symbolic Bisimulation for the Applied Pi Calculus. Stéphanie Delaune, Steve Kremer, and Mark Ryan. In Proc. of Foundations of Software Technology and Theoretical Computer Science, 27th International Conference (FSTTCS 2007), 2007. Speaker: none

Advisers: Matteo Maffei and Catalin Hritcu