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Section: Research Program

Algebraic Curves in Cryptology

The challenges associated to algebraic curves in cryptology are diverse, because of the variety of mathematical objects to be considered. These challenges are also connected to each other. On the cryptographic side, efficiency matters. As of 2016, the most widely used set of elliptic curves, the so-called NIST curves, are in the process of being replaced by a new set of candidate elliptic curves for future standardization. This is the topic of RFC 7748 [38].

On the cryptanalytic side, the discrete logarithm problem on (Jacobians of) curves has resisted all attempts for many years. Among the currently active topics, the decomposition algorithms raise interesting problems related to polynomial system solving, as do attempts to solve the discrete logarithm problem on curves defined over binary fields. In particular, while it is generally accepted that the so-called Koblitz curves (base field extensions of curves defined over GF(2)) are likely to be a weak class among the various curve choices, no concrete attack supports this claim fully.

The research objectives of CARAMBA on the topic of algebraic curves for cryptology are as follows: