ETH Zürich » Computer Science » Theory » Cryptography

Cryptography Foundations 2018

Lecturer: Ueli Maurer
Assistants: Christian Badertscher and Fabio Banfi


  • April 11: The Reading Assignment is defined. See below for futher details.
  • April 5: The midterm location has changed: ML H 44 (April 11, 13:15-14:15). See below for futher details. After the midterm the lecture continues at 14:30 in the usual lecture room.


The lecture takes place on Wednesdays 13–16 in CAB G 51.

The first lecture is on February 21. There are no exercise sessions in the first week.

Lecture Notes

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A new problem set is distributed every week at the beginning of the lecture. Detailed solutions are handed out during the exercise sessions in the following week. You are not required to hand in your solutions to the exercises. However, if you wish to receive feedback, feel free to hand in your solutions to your assistant.

Exercise Sessions

The weekly exercise class discusses solutions to the exercise questions. The sessions on Monday and Tuesday cover the same material.

There are no exercise classes in the first week of the semester, i.e., the first exercise classes are on February 26 and 27.

Assistant Time Room
Fabio Banfi Monday 10–12 CAB G 52
Christian Badertscher Tuesday 13–15 CAB G 57

Exercise Sheets

Exercises Exercise Solutions
Exercise 1 Solution 1
Exercise 2 (Updated on March 5) Solution 2
Exercise 3 Solution 3
Exercise 4 Solution 4
Exercise 5 Solution 5 (Updated on April 9)
Exercise 6 (Updated on April 4) Solution 6
Exercise 7 -
Exercise 8 -

Reading Assignments

The reading assignment for this lecture (note the 1 A in the course catalogue) is defined:

  • Book chapter "Cryptography and Computation after Turing" by Prof. Ueli Maurer. Source: Chapter 4 of the book "The Once and Future Turing", Cambridge University Press, 2016
From the ETH network, the publisher allows access to the book here (thanks to ETH Bibliothek). Alternatively, the pre-print is found here. The differences between the versions are minor type-setting properties.


There will be one written intermediate exam ("midterm") during the semester. The grade achieved in the midterm influences the final grade if this influence is beneficial: The final grade is the maximum of (1) the grade achieved in the final session exam and (2) the weighted average of the grades achieved in the midterm (25%) and in the final session exam (75%).

All exams are “closed book”, i.e., no supplementary material is permitted.

Date Starting Time Duration Room
Intermediate Exam April 11 13:15 60 Minutes ML H 44

Review of the Midterm

The correction of the midterm can be reviewed. Date and location will be announced.


The course does not make use of textbooks, but we encourage the students to consult several books to get a more detailed and sometimes complementary view on the various topics. Some useful books on cryptography, each with a different focus, are listed below:

  • O. Goldreich, Foundations of Cryptography, Basic Tools, Cambridge University Press, 2001.
  • J. Katz and Y. Lindell, Introduction to Modern Cryptography, Chapman & Hall, 2007.
  • N. Smart, Cryptography Made Simple, Springer Verlag, 2016.
  • W. Mao, Modern Cryptography - Theory and Practice, Prentice Hall, 2004.
  • A.J. Menezes, P.C. van Oorschot, and S.A. Vanstone, Handbook of Applied Cryptography, Boca Raton: CRC Press, 1997.
  • D.R. Stinson, Cryptography - Theory and Practice, CRC Press, 1995.