University of Colorado Boulder

Fifty-Fourth Annual DeLong Lecture Series

Department of Mathematics

Dr. Kristin Lauter

Microsoft Research

Lectures to be held February 12th and 13th 2019.

February 12, 2019
5:00pm - 6:00pm ECCR 1B40 Private AI (or: How to Keep your Location Data Secret)
As the world rushes towards the adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in all aspects of our lives, the promise is great, but the risks are many. AI can help to improve and simplify our daily lives and introduce new types of safety measures, but at the cost of sharing and potentially leaking or misusing our private data. Cloud services built on AI algorithms need to make use of customer or enterprise data, to train models and make predictions. It is up to us to protect that data, in storage and in use. Private AI is a set of tools being developed by the Cryptography Group at Microsoft Research which can help protect data while in use by encrypting it. The leading edge of Private AI is based on Homomorphic Encryption (HE), a new encryption paradigm which allows the cloud to operate on private data in encrypted form, without ever decrypting it, enabling private training and private prediction. This talk will give a snapshot of the state of the art and show some compelling demos of HE in action.
February 13, 2019
4:00pm - 5:00pm ECCR 265 Supersingular Isogeny Graphs in Cryptography (or: How to Keep your Secrets in a Post-Quantum World)
As we move towards a world where quantum computers can be built at scale, we are forced to consider the question of what hard problems in mathematics our next generation of cryptographic systems will be based on. Supersingular Isogeny Graphs were proposed for use in cryptography in 2006 by Charles, Goren, and Lauter. Supersingular Isogeny Graphs are examples of Ramanujan graphs, which are optimal expander graphs. These graphs have the property that relatively short walks on the graph approximate the uniform distribution, and for this reason, walks on expander graphs are often used as a good source of randomness in computer science. But the reason these graphs are important for cryptography is that finding paths in these graphs, i.e. routing, is hard: there are no known subexponential algorithms to solve this problem, either classically or on a quantum computer. For this reason, cryptosystems based on the hardness of problems on Supersingular Isogeny Graphs are currently under consideration for standardization in the NIST Post-Quantum Cryptography (PQC) Competition, and have advanced to the second round of the competition. This talk will introduce these graphs, the cryptographic applications, and the various algorithmic approaches which have been tried to attack these systems.

Reception to follow Lecture at the Koenig Alumni Center, 1202 University Avenue, 5:00 - 7:30pm

Kristin Lauter

Kristin Lauter

Kristin Estella Lauter is a mathematician and cryptographer whose research areas are number theory, algebraic geometry, and applications to cryptography. She is particularly known for her work on homomorphic encryption, elliptic curve cryptography, and for introducing supersingular isogeny graphs as a hard problem into cryptography. She is a Principal Researcher and Research Manager of the Cryptography Group at Microsoft Research in Redmond, Washington. She served as President of the Association for Women in Mathematics from 2015 –2017.  She has published more than 100 papers and holds more than 50 patents.

Lauter was awarded the Selfridge Prize in Computational Number Theory in 2008 and was elected to the 2015 Class of Fellows of the American Mathematical Society "for contributions to arithmetic geometry and cryptography as well as service to the community."  In 2017, she was selected as a fellow of the Association for Women in Mathematics in the inaugural class.  She is the 2018-2020 Polya Lecturer for the Mathematical Association of America.

Lauter received her BA, MS, and Ph.D degrees in mathematics from the University of Chicago, in 1990, 1991, and 1996, respectively. Prior to joining Microsoft, she held positions as a visiting scholar at Max Planck Institut fur Mathematik in Bonn, Germany (1997), T.H. Hildebrandt Research Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan (1996-1999), and a visiting researcher at Institut de Mathematiques Luminy in France (1999).

She is a co-founder of the Women in Numbers Network, a research collaboration community for women in number theory, and she is the lead PI for the AWM NSF Advance Grant (2015-2020) to create and sustain research networks for women in all areas of mathematics. She serves on the Board of Trustees of MSRI, the Advisory Board of the Banff International Research Station and has served on the Council[8] of the American Mathematical Society (2014-2017).

DeLong Lecture Series

This Lecture Series is funded by an endowment given by Professor Ira M. DeLong, who came to the University of Colorado in 1888 at the age of 33. Professor DeLong essentially became the mathematics department by teaching not only the college subjects but also the preparatory mathematics courses. Professor DeLong was a prominent citizen of the community of Boulder as well as president of the Mercantile Bank and Trust Company, organizer of the Colorado Education Association, and president of the charter convention that gave Boulder the city manager form of government in 1917. After his death in 1942 it was decided that the bequest he made to the mathematics department would accumulate interest until income became available to fund DeLong prizes for undergraduates and DeLong Lectureships to bring outstanding mathematicians to campus each year. The first DeLong Lectures were delivered in the 1962-63 academic year.

Previous DeLong Lecturers