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Nicolas Courtois

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Nicolas Tadeusz Courtois
Born (1971-11-14) November 14, 1971 (age 52)
Alma materUniversity of Paris VI: Pierre et Marie Curie[1]
Known forCryptography, security
Scientific career
FieldsComputer science
InstitutionsUniversity College London

Nicolas Tadeusz Courtois (born 14 November 1971) is a cryptographer. He was formerly senior lecturer in computer science at University College London.[2]

Courtois was one of the co-authors of both the XSL attack against block ciphers, such as the Advanced Encryption Standard,[3][4] and the XL system for solving systems of algebraic equations[5] used in the attack. Other cryptographic results of Courtois include algebraic attacks on stream ciphers,[6] attacks on the KeeLoq and Hitag 2 systems used for remote keyless automobile entry systems,[7] and an analysis of cryptographic weaknesses in public transit smart cards including the London Underground Oyster card[8] and the Dutch OV-chipkaart.[7][9] More recently, he has written about cryptocurrency.[10]

Courtois graduated from University of Paris VI: Pierre et Marie Curie, where he received his doctoral degree in cryptography.[1]


  1. ^ a b Nicolas T. Courtois at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  2. ^ "Staff profile". UCL. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  3. ^ 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, vol. 2501, Springer-Verlag, pp. 267–287, doi:10.1007/3-540-36178-2_17.
  4. ^ Greene, Thomas C. (September 16, 2002), New AES crypto standard broken already? Depends who you ask, The Register.
  5. ^ 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, vol. 1807, Springer-Verlag, pp. 392–407, doi:10.1007/3-540-45539-6_27.
  6. ^ Courtois, Nicolas T. (2003), "Fast algebraic attacks on stream ciphers with linear feedback", Advances in Cryptology – Crypto 2003, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 2729, Springer-Verlag, pp. 176–194, doi:10.1007/978-3-540-45146-4_11.
  7. ^ a b Blincoe, Robert (July 28, 2008), Oyster cracker vows to clone cards: Cloning kit could sell for just £200, says researcher, v3.co.uk.
  8. ^ Charlesworth, Andrew (June 23, 2008), Researchers crack Oyster card security, v3.co.uk.
  9. ^ de Winter, Brenno (April 18, 2008), "Weer nieuwe kraak chip OV-chipkaart", WebWereld (in Dutch).
  10. ^ "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