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Cryptographic Technology Group


Our work in cryptography is making an impact within and outside the Federal government. Strong cryptography improves the security of systems and the information they process. IT users also enjoy the enhanced availability in the marketplace of secure applications through cryptography, Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), and e-authentication. Work in this area addresses such topics as secret and public key cryptographic techniques, advanced authentication systems, cryptographic protocols and interfaces, public key certificate management, biometrics, smart tokens, cryptographic key recovery, and security architectures. This year, the mandated work in the Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12 (HSPD-12) has continued. A few examples of the impact of this work includes changes to Federal employee identification methods, how users authenticate their identity when needing government services online, and the technical aspects of passports issued to U.S. citizens.

CSD collaborates with a number of national and international agencies and standards bodies to develop secure, interoperable security standards. Federal agency collaborators include the Department of Energy, the Department of State, the National Security Agency, and the Communications Security Establishment of Canada, while national and international standards bodies include the American Standards Committee (ASC) X9 (financial industry standards), the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). Industry collaborators include BC5 Technologies, Certicom, Entrust Technologies, Hewlett Packard, InfoGard, Microsoft, NTRU, Pitney Bowes, RSA Security, Spyrus, and Wells Fargo.


Lightweight Cryptography Project—NIST is investigating the need for lightweight cryptographic algorithms. This includes looking at applications that may require lightweight algorithms as well as defining possible use cases.

Cryptographic Standards Development Process Review—Recent news reports about leaked classified documents have caused concern from the cryptographic community about the security of NIST cryptographic standards and guidelines. NIST is also deeply …

NIST Randomness Beacon—NIST is implementing a source of public randomness. The service (at https://beacon.nist.gov/home) uses two independent commercially available sources of randomness, each with an independent …

E-Authentication—[Posted April 9, 2015 -- NIST Solicits Comments on its Electronic Authentication Guideline - Read More]Electronic Authentication is the process of establishing confidence in user identities that …

Cryptographic Hash Algorithm Competition—NIST opened a public competition on November 2, 2007 to develop a new cryptographic hash algorithm, which converts a variable length message into a short "message digest" that can be used for …

Security Aspects of Electronic Voting—The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002 was passed by Congress to encourage the upgrade of voting equipment across the United States. HAVA established the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) and …

Cryptographic Applications and Infrastructures—Application developers depend upon security protocols to establish security services (e.g., to establish a secure tunnel) using cryptography. In turn, these protocols rely on cryptographic …

Cryptographic Toolkit—The Computer Security Division's (CSD) Cryptographic Technology Group (CTG) is involved in the development, maintenance, and promotion of a number of standards and guidance that cover a wide range …


General Information:
Lily Chen
Phone: 301-975-6974
Fax: 301-975-8670

100 Bureau Drive, M/S 8930
Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8930