Nicolas Courtois

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Nicolas Tadeusz Courtois is a cryptographer, a senior lecturer in computer science at University College London.[1]

Courtois was one of the co-authors of both the XSL attack against block ciphers such as the Advanced Encryption Standard[2][3] and the XL system for solving systems of algebraic equations,[4] used in the attack. Other cryptographic results of Courtois include algebraic attacks on stream ciphers,[5] attacks on the KeeLoq and Hitag 2 systems used for remote keyless automobile entry systems,[6] and an analysis of cryptographic weaknesses in public transit smart cards including the London Underground Oyster card[7] and the Dutch OV-chipkaart.[6][8] More recently, he has written about cryptocurrency.[9]

Courtois graduated from University of Paris VI: Pierre et Marie Curie, where he got his doctoral degree in cryptography.[10]


  1. ^ "Staff profile". UCL. Retrieved 2 June 2014. 
  2. ^ Courtois, Nicolas T.; Pieprzyk, Josef (2002), "Cryptanalysis of block ciphers with overdefined systems of equations", Advances in Cryptology – AsiaCrypt 2002, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 2501, Springer-Verlag, pp. 267–287, doi:10.1007/3-540-36178-2_17 .
  3. ^ Greene, Thomas C. (September 16, 2002), New AES crypto standard broken already? Depends who you ask, The Register .
  4. ^ Courtois, Nicolas; Klimov, Alexander; Patarin, Jacques; Shamir, Adi (2000), "Efficient algorithms for solving overdefined systems of multivariate polynomial equations", Advances in Cryptology – EuroCrypt 2000, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 1807, Springer-Verlag, pp. 392–407, doi:10.1007/3-540-45539-6_27 .
  5. ^ Courtois, Nicolas T. (2003), "Fast algebraic attacks on stream ciphers with linear feedback", Advances in Cryptology – Crypto 2003, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 2729, Springer-Verlag, pp. 176–194, doi:10.1007/978-3-540-45146-4_11 .
  6. ^ a b Blincoe, Robert (July 28, 2008), Oyster cracker vows to clone cards: Cloning kit could sell for just £200, says researcher, .
  7. ^ Charlesworth, Andrew (June 23, 2008), Researchers crack Oyster card security, .
  8. ^ de Winter, Brenno (April 18, 2008), "Weer nieuwe kraak chip OV-chipkaart", WebWereld (in Dutch) .
  9. ^ "Emerging Technology From the arXiv". MIT Technology Review. 17 May 2014. Retrieved 2 June 2014. On The Longest Chain Rule and Programmed Self-Destruction of Crypto Currencies 
  10. ^ Nicolas T. Courtois at the Mathematics Genealogy Project.