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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

Cryptography Made Simple

ISBN 9783319219356
Publication Date November 2015
Formats Hardcover Paperback Ebook 
Publisher Springer

In this introductory textbook the author explains the key topics in cryptography. He takes a modern approach, where defining what is meant by "secure" is as important as creating something that achieves that goal, and security definitions are central to the discussion throughout.

The author balances a largely non-rigorous style — many proofs are sketched only — with appropriate formality and depth. For example, he uses the terminology of groups and finite fields so that the reader can understand both the latest academic research and "real-world" documents such as application programming interface descriptions and cryptographic standards. The text employs colour to distinguish between public and private information, and all chapters include summaries and suggestions for further reading.

This is a suitable textbook for advanced undergraduate and graduate students in computer science, mathematics and engineering, and for self-study by professionals in information security. While the appendix summarizes most of the basic algebra and notation required, it is assumed that the reader has a basic knowledge of discrete mathematics, probability, and elementary calculus.

Nigel P. Smart is a professor of computer science in the University of Bristol. He is a leading cryptographer, with particular expertise in elliptic curve cryptography, pairing-based cryptography, and multi-party computation. Among his achievements and recognition, he received a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award, he is currently the Vice President of the International Association for Cryptologic Research (IACR), and he has chaired the most important academic conferences in this discipline. Beyond his academic experience he also worked in industry (HP Laboratories), and he has cofounded a number of startups, most recently Dyadic Security, a company that deploys distributed cryptographic solutions based on multi-party computations. Prof. Smart was made a Fellow of the IACR in 2016 for essential contributions to the theory and practice of real-world cryptography and outstanding service to the association.

Modular Arithmetic, Groups, Finite Fields and Probability
Elliptic Curves
Historical Ciphers
The Enigma Machine
Information Theoretic Security
Historical Stream Ciphers
Modern Stream Ciphers
Block Ciphers
Symmetric Key Distribution
Hash Functions and Message Authentication Codes
Basic Public Key Encryption Algorithms
Primality Testing and Factoring
Discrete Logarithms
Key Exchange and Signature Schemes
Implementation Issues
Obtaining Authentic Public Keys
Attacks on Public Key Schemes
Definitions of Security
Complexity Theoretic Approaches
Provable Security: With Random Oracles
Hybrid Encryption
Provable Security: Without Random Oracles
Secret Sharing Schemes
Commitments and Oblivious Transfer
Zero-Knowledge Proofs
Secure Multiparty Computation.


“The goal of cryptography is to obfuscate data for unintended recipients. … The book is divided into four parts. … The book is very comprehensive, and very accessible for dedicated students.” (Klaus Galensa, Computing Reviews, computingreviews.com, October, 2016)“Cryptography made simple is a textbook that provides a broad coverage of topics that form an essential working knowledge for the contemporary cryptographer. It is particularly suited to introducing graduate and advanced undergraduate students in computer science to the concepts necessary for understanding academic cryptography and its impact on real-world practice, though it will also be useful for mathematicians or engineers wishing to gain a similar perspective on this material.” (Maura Beth Paterson, Mathematical Reviews, July, 2016)“This is a very thorough introduction to cryptography, aimed at lower-division undergraduates. It is an engineering textbook that uses modern mathematical terminology (such as groups and finite fields). … Bottom line: really for engineers, and a useful book if used carefully; the organization makes is easy to get overwhelmed by the background material before you get to the 'good stuff', and even the good stuff has an overwhelming amount of detail.” (Allen Stenger, MAA Reviews, maa.org, June, 2016)“This very thorough book by Smart (Univ. of Bristol, UK) is aimed at graduate students and advanced undergraduates in mathematics and computer science and intended to serve as a bridge to research papers in the field. … Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through professionals/practitioners.” (C. Bauer, Choice, Vol. 53 (10), June, 2016)
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