We seek to develop techniques for securing tomorrow's global information infrastructure by exploring theoretical foundations, near-term practical applications, and long-range speculative research.
We aim to understand the theoretical power of cryptography and the practical engineering of secure information systems, from appropriate definitions and proofs of security, through cryptographic algorithm and protocol design, to implementations of real applications with easy-to-use security features. We are also interested in the relationship of our field to others, such as complexity theory, quantum computing, algorithms, machine learning, and cryptographic policy debates.
We aim to base a variety of cryptographic primitives on complexity theoretic assumptions. We focus on the assumption that there exist highly structured problems --- admitting so called "zero-knowledge" protocols --- that are nevertheless hard to compute
Shafi Goldwasser, MIT EECS, UC Berkeley, and Weizmann Institute of Science professor and CSAIL member, was recently awarded the 2023 Dijkstra Prize in Distributed Computing alongside a team of researchers for their work on “Completeness theorems for non-cryptographic fault-tolerant distributed computation.”
This week it was announced that MIT professors and CSAIL principal investigators Shafi Goldwasser, Silvio Micali, Ronald Rivest, and former MIT professor Adi Shamir won this year’s BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Awards in the Information and Communication Technologies category for their work in cryptography.