Cryptology is the study of cryptography, the construction of codes and ciphers, and cryptanalysis, the study of analyzing and breaking codes and ciphers.

But it is also much more. Cryptographers study any sort of interaction or protocol that needs to be carried out correctly in the face of adversaries (real or imagined). This can mean sending secret messages over an insecure network, creating fault tolerant computer systems, or verifying the identity of someone you have never met.

As an example of the broad scope of cryptology, consider the following problem: You and I both know some secret and want to verify that we know the same secret without revealing any information about the secret itself. We want to, for example, prove to each other that we're both in possession of Colonel Sanders secret recipe without giving it away. I could pick a number n at random, ask you the nth ingredient, and then verify that your response is in fact correct. Then you could do the same for me. However this is a terrible way to go about it because if I don't really have the secret recipe then I can steal it from you by just pretending that I do and asking you questions.

So how can this be done in a way such that it is provable (in a mathematical sense) that no information about the secret "leaks"? Cryptographers have come up with the answer: zero knowledge proofs.

Cryptology draws on many related fields including probability, computational complexity, theoretical computer science, coding theory, number theory, the theory of computation, and information theory.

Typical problems tackled by cryptographers are the creation of secure encryption schemes (both public key cryptography and private key cryptography), authentication, zero knowledge, PCP (Probabilistically Checkable Proofs), fair auctions, digital cash, anonymous cash, oblivious transfer, and data integrity.

As a final note on surprising results obtained in this field, consider that cryptographers have come up with a way that people can play poker without any cards and with full confidence that no one can cheat. It's called mental poker.

Learn More!
- A -
Adleman, Leonard
AES
Alice and Bob
ANSI X9
ANSI X9.9
ANSI X9.30
ANSI X9.31
Applied Cryptography
Assassination Politics
asymmetric cipher
Avalanche Effect

- B -
Charles Babbage
base64
The Beale Ciphers
Birthday Attack
blind signatures
blowfish
Stefan Brands
brute force

- C -
Caesar shift
Caesar shift cipher
capstone
CAST
CAST-256
CBC
cipher
ciphertext
cipher alphabet
cipher text
code
code breaking
The Code Book
Code Talkers
computer security
Confusion and Diffusion
cracker
cypherpunks
Cryptanalysis
Cryptonomicon
cryptology
cryptology: terms for breaking algorithims
cryptogram
Cryptograph
cryptographic primitives
cryptography
Cryptography And Network Security
cryptographer
cryptanalysis
crypto
Crypto Nugget
cut and choose protocols

- D -
dancing men
Decorrelation
decrypt
decryption
DeCSS
DES
Discrete Logarithms
Discrete Logarithm Signatures
differential cryptanalysis
Diffie-Hellman
Digital Cash
digital signing
the dining cryptographers problem
Double Spending
DSA
DSS

- E -
ElGamal
Elliptic Curve Cryptography
encrypt
encrypted
encrypted virus
encryption
encryption algorithm
Encryption Day
English transformations
enigma
ERIKO-CHAN cipher
Everything public PGP keys
Everything2 Crypto Project

- F -
Feal
Horst Feistel
Feistel network
Francis Bacon
frequency analysis
FIPS
FIPS PUBS
FIPS PUB 180-1

- G -
Galois LFSR
GPG

- H -
hacker
Handbook of Applied Cryptography
hash function
homophonic substitution cipher

- I -
IDEA

- J -
JED:Words (2)

- K -
key escrow
Khafre
Khufu
kleptography

- L -
Linux Cryptography Patches
Lucifer

- M -
Mathematics of RSA
MD2
MD5 hash function
mechanical cipher system
Merkle's Puzzles
Message Authentication Codes
mlecchita-vikalpa
modern cryptography
monoalphabetic substitution cipher

- N -
NIST)
nomenclator
NSA

- O -
One-time Pad
OpenPGP

- P -
Perfect Hash Funcitons
Pigpen cipher
PKCS
PGP
plaintext
plain alphabet
Playfair Cipher
polyalphabetic substitution cipher
private key cryptography
public-key encryption
public key cryptography
purple

- Q -
Quantum Cryptography

- R -
Rambutan
RC4
RC5
RC6
RAP)
Restricting Cryptography
RFC 1321 (The MD5 Message-Digest Algorithm)
Rijndael
Ron Rivest
Rot-13
ROT26 (silly)
RSA
RSA Secret Key Challenge

- S -
S-Box
S/MIME
SAFE
SAFER
Samizdat and Samizdat protocol
Bruce Schneier
secret decoder ring
secure
secure hash
Secure Hash Standard (SHS)
security
SHA-1
SIGABA
simple substitution cipher
Skipjack
SSL
ssh
Steganographic File System
steganography
Stream Cipher
strong cryptography
strong encryption
Subliminal Channel
substitution cipher
symmetric cipher
symmetric encryption
synchronous stream cipher

- T -
Tempest
transposition cipher
trapdoor function
Triple DES
twofish

- V -
Vigenère cipher and Breaking the Vigenère cipher
Wim Van Eck
Van Eck phreaking

- W -
Weak Keys
Web of Trust
World War II Cryptographic Simulation

- X -
XOR

- Z -
zero-knowledge proofs
Phil Zimmerman
/msg me with additions to the list.

This the old Cryptology Meta-Node.

This node is a meta node, so don't get too excited about its content. If you're looking for the already made and index crypto nodes, a good place to start is Xamot's Cryptology Meta-node.

It's intended to be a overview of people requests for nodes explaining anything to do with crypto. Including (but not limited to) cryptographic primitives, algorithms and protocols. It's also intended to be a overview of pages people have promised to write.
There are many motivations behind this meta node. The most important are avoiding reinventing the wheel every few hours, but also having a overview of what people want, so that those of us who care enough to make the nodes will know what people want.

If you want a node written, want to tell someone you intend to write a node (good thing to do, so you'll avoid the wheel issue) feel free to /msg delta in the chatterbox, and tell me what you wish to write/get written, and if you'd like your name attached to it or not. I can also be contacted by email at terje@yes.no.

Currently there are plans for the following nodes:

Delta:

Xamot:

Unassigned requests:

If you want to write a crypto node, those might be good places to start. Please consider /msg'ing delta and letting us know you intent to write the node.

See also:
Everything2 Crypto Project
Cryptology Meta-node

Cryp*tol"o*gy (kr?p-t?l"?-j?), n. [Gr. krypto`s hidden + -logy.]

Secret or enigmatical language.

Johnson.

 

© Webster 1913.

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