The Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security (CERIAS)

The Center for Education and Research in
Information Assurance and Security (CERIAS)

Steve Lipner - SAFECode

Students: Spring 2024, unless noted otherwise, sessions will be virtual on Zoom.

Thinking About the Future of Encryption

Nov 01, 2023

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During the last several years, there has been growing concern that the development of quantum computers could undermine the public-key cryptography that is a fundamental pillar of security on the Internet. Recently, the U.S. Government's National Institute of Standards and Technology has released draft standards for post-quantum encryption algorithms that can replace the existing, and potentially vulnerable public-key encryption. But while the future of encryption will depend on new algorithms,there are many other factors that will influence security in the decades to come. In 2022, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released a report on "The Future of Encryption" that examines factors including technical aspects of cryptography, societal and policy considerations, and product engineering. The report presents a series of findings that apply broadly, and paints three alternative future scenarios for the future of encryption. This presentation, based largely on the Academies report, will provide researchers, engineers, and policy professionals with context in which to view future developments and concepts for prioritizing future actions.

About the Speaker

Steve Lipner

Steve Lipner is the executive director of SAFECode, an industry nonprofit focused on software security assurance. He was previously partner director of software security at Microsoft where he was the creator and long-time leader of the Security Development Lifecycle (SDL) and was responsible for software integrity policies and government security evaluations. Steve also serves as the chair of the U.S.Government's Information Security and Privacy Advisory Board. He has more than a half century of experience in cybersecurity as researcher, engineer, and development manager and is named as coinventor on twelve U.S. patents. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and chaired the Academies' Committee on the Future of Encryption. Steve's CV is available at

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