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The NIST Contest to Protect Everything on the Internet

By IQT News posted 08 Oct 2020

(WallStreetJournal) Chris Peikert , associate professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Michigan, who has been studying cryptography for two decades and hundreds of the world’s top cryptographers are involved in the NIST competition to develop new encryption standards for the U.S., which would guard against both classical and quantum-computing cyberattacks.
This summer, federal officials announced the 15 algorithms that will be considered for standardization, meaning the winners would become a part of the architecture of the internet, protecting people’s sensitive data.
Next, researchers will spend about a year trying to break them to see which ones hold up, and test them to get the best balance of performance and security.
The initiative is being managed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce. NIST has asked entrants to design encryption algorithms that they think could withstand a cyberattack from a quantum computer. The competition began in 2017 with about 70 algorithms. The goal of the competition is to replace today’s commonly used public-key cryptography methods.

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