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1. Applied Cryptography: Protocols,
2. Cryptography Engineering: Design
3. Understanding Cryptography: A
4. An Introduction to Mathematical
5. Cryptography and Network Security:
6. Introduction to Modern Cryptography:
7. The Code Book: The Science of
8. Cryptography Decrypted
9. Practical Cryptography
10. Cryptography: A Very Short Introduction
11. Cryptography: The Science of Secret
12. Cryptography: Theory and Practice,
13. Introduction to Cryptography with
14. Foundations of Cryptography: Volume
15. Cryptography for Dummies
16. Secure Programming Cookbook for
17. Cryptography in C and C++, Second
18. Beginning Cryptography with Java
19. Malicious Cryptography: Exposing
20. Handbook of Applied Cryptography

1. Applied Cryptography: Protocols, Algorithms, and Source Code in C, Second Edition
by Bruce Schneier
Paperback: 758 Pages (1996-10-18)
list price: US$60.00 -- used & new: US$24.91
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0471117099
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
". . .the best introduction to cryptography I've ever seen. . . . The book the National Security Agency wanted never to be published. . . ." -Wired Magazine

". . .monumental . . . fascinating . . . comprehensive . . . the definitive work on cryptography for computer programmers . . ." -Dr. Dobb's Journal

". . .easily ranks as one of the most authoritative in its field." -PC Magazine

". . .the bible of code hackers." -The Millennium Whole Earth Catalog

This new edition of the cryptography classic provides you with a comprehensive survey of modern cryptography. The book details how programmers and electronic communications professionals can use cryptography-the technique of enciphering and deciphering messages-to maintain the privacy of computer data. It describes dozens of cryptography algorithms, gives practical advice on how to implement them into cryptographic software, and shows how they can be used to solve security problems. Covering the latest developments in practical cryptographic techniques, this new edition shows programmers who design computer applications, networks, and storage systems how they can build security into their software and systems.

What's new in the Second Edition?
* New information on the Clipper Chip, including ways to defeat the key escrow mechanism
* New encryption algorithms, including algorithms from the former Soviet Union and South Africa, and the RC4 stream cipher
* The latest protocols for digital signatures, authentication, secure elections, digital cash, and more
* More detailed information on key management and cryptographic implementationsAmazon.com Review
Cryptographic techniques have applications far beyond theobvious uses of encoding and decoding information. For Internet developerswho need to know about capabilities, such as digital signatures, that dependon cryptographic techniques, there's no better overview thanApplied Cryptography, the definitive book on thesubject. Bruce Schneier covers general classes of cryptographic protocolsand then specific techniques, detailing the inner workings ofreal-world cryptographic algorithms including the Data EncryptionStandard and RSA public-key cryptosystems. The book includessource-code listings and extensive advice on the practical aspects ofcryptography implementation, such as the importance of generatingtruly random numbers and of keeping keys secure. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (107)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic way to start your crypto learning adventure.
Of course Bruce's book (even the second edition) is very dated in terms of the specific ciphers and hash functions that are prominently featured. But those will continue to evolve as time passes; no book is going to capture the modern developments for long.

The real value of Applied Cryptography is the fundamental understanding (and interest, in my case) it helps to build. Intros to terminology, theory, practical implementations, attack models, and protocol weaknesses are outlined here in great detail. I can honestly say that this book - along with lots of openssl / gnupg tinkering - have put a functional (for my sysadmin purposes) cryptography foundation within my grasp.

NB: this book is old enough that it pays to shop around for a used copy in good condition.

1-0 out of 5 stars No CD
I feel totally ripped off.What idiot would publish code these days with no CD or download.I would glad to have paid $40 more to get a book that comes with a CD.Now I have to, get this, snail mail the author and wait 4 weeks to get the CD.Serves me right for not reading the negative reviews before buying the book.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good but starting to show its age
A classic reference on all things crypto, but since 1996 there have been a lot of developments in the field.It still serves as a great source of information for someone new to the field, but if you're looking for the latest information on algorithm security and implementation considerations, you might do better with Schneier's very recent Practical Cryptography.

2-0 out of 5 stars BS grade.
Essentially a glossary. Repetitious, drawn-out, painful explanation of terms. Nothing serious, nothing in-depth. Sounds professional but hollow. The only strong point of this book is that it includes many, many terms; useful from a "talk" point of view, but useless from an "applied" point of view.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great book for start in Cryptography
I am no expert, not in mathematics neither in cryptography. Well this book is exactly what i was looking for, no hard mathematics, no hard cryptographic theory, indeed a book for beginners like me and also for the engineer who wants implement his own cryptographic system. Specially for
computer science students and system developers this book is a great reference.
Implementation details and sample code in C language are included. The book is also very complete
Including the main topics in cryptography and cryptanalysis.
... Read more

2. Cryptography Engineering: Design Principles and Practical Applications
by Niels Ferguson, Bruce Schneier, Tadayoshi Kohno
Paperback: 384 Pages (2010-03-15)
list price: US$55.00 -- used & new: US$24.04
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0470474246
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The ultimate guide to cryptography, updated from an author team of the world's top cryptography experts.

Cryptography is vital to keeping information safe, in an era when the formula to do so becomes more and more challenging. Written by a team of world-renowned cryptography experts, this essential guide is the definitive introduction to all major areas of cryptography: message security, key negotiation, and key management. You'll learn how to think like a cryptographer. You'll discover techniques for building cryptography into products from the start and you'll examine the many technical changes in the field.

After a basic overview of cryptography and what it means today, this indispensable resource covers such topics as block ciphers, block modes, hash functions, encryption modes, message authentication codes, implementation issues, negotiation protocols, and more. Helpful examples and hands-on exercises enhance your understanding of the multi-faceted field of cryptography.

  • An author team of internationally recognized cryptography experts updates you on vital topics in the field of cryptography
  • Shows you how to build cryptography into products from the start
  • Examines updates and changes to cryptography
  • Includes coverage on key servers, message security, authentication codes, new standards, block ciphers, message authentication codes, and more

Cryptography Engineering gets you up to speed in the ever-evolving field of cryptography. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

2-0 out of 5 stars Exam Questions add little to Practical Cryptography
This book is exactly the same as Ferguson and Schneier's _Practical Cryptography_ with the addition of examination questions, so it can be used in a college level course on cryptography. OK. I liked that.

Disappointing that none of the new crypto system were added to update the text to 2010. As far as I can see it still looks like the 2003 PC book. This "new" book is seven (7) years out of date? Wiskey Tango. Hey, I still like the book, but FCOL . . . I'd like to see the NIST new block cipher modes, such as more on the NIST block cipher mode from Rogaway at UC Davis-OCB and how it can be used in authenticating VPN-like remote connections back to the home office. This book had nothing on Propagating-PCBC (maybe I missed seeing it - if so sorry), and where is format preserving encryption (AES-FFX mode)? Or, LUKS dm-crypt, loop-aes? No? Too specific for this book maybe. OK. But still, nothing new at all? Nothing about SHA3 except to say the competition has started? It's almost done now. Not even one thing on their own entry, Skein?

Disappointing. I think the time for book publishing is over. I can get more info. and more up to date info. from Googling then reading PDF-downloaded papers and (of all things) Wikipedia - how sad.

5-0 out of 5 stars Nice intro for non-cryptographists
This book gives you a nice introduction to modern cryptography including message authentication, public key infrastructure and hashing algorithms. It does not delve too much in unimportant details, but gives an overview of the common pitfalls and the state of the art software available.

The book contains exercises at the end of each chapter which makes the book suitable for self teaching. Do not expect to be able to implement your own safe cryptographic algorithms simply by reading this book but learn some kind of professional paranoia and an idea of just how difficult it is to write safe code today.

I am not a professional programmer myself or a cryptographic engineer, but I did enjoy the book very much since it was able to keep me up to speed with the newest technology. I wholeheartedly recommend this book to anyone interested in an overview of cryptography, but beware that some mathematical background is required (not more than high school stuff).

3-0 out of 5 stars Just an update of an earlier work
I bought this blind on the promise of some new work from Ferguson and Schneier. But got fooled by the different title: "Cryptography Engineering" is just an update of the first edition of "Practical Cryptography". This is good stuff by some excellent authors, but if you've already bought the first edition, there's not enough more to make it worth forking out another $40 or so.

5-0 out of 5 stars The text we've needed
It turns out that cryptography is the least of the issues in cryptographic systems. Good codes are available in good implementations all over the place (one reason the authors warn against implementing your own, since good implementations are very hard). But, as the authors say in their introductory chapter, "Cryptography by itself is fairly useless." They liken strong codes in a weak system to a bank-vault door on a tent. This book provides a first lesson in pouring some concrete into the walls behind that door.

Phrased as a text for a one semester graduate or advanced undergrad class, this highly readable text covers a range of basics - the first and most pervasive being the professional paranoia needed to actively seek out ways to defeat your own systems. The authors cover things you might expect in a crypto course, including ciphers, message digests, key exchange, and a smattering of mathematical basics. There's less of the real crypto material than you might think, however. I mean, what good is the unbreakable code when the bad guy with a root kit can read your passwords from the paging file or /dev/kmem? Instead, this book stands out for things like wiping secrets from memory as fast as you can - if you can, if language design or the physics of computer memory even make it possible. Even things like random numbers and the system clock come under careful scrutiny and analysis of their own. The reader who goes through this book cover to cover comes away with a solid appreciation of the hardware, software, and social issues involved in creating truly secure systems.

But, as the authors take pains to state, this is only an introduction. As happened with Schneier's "Applied Cryptography", it could become "... notorious for the systems that [readers] then designed and implemented on their own" after reading it. Serious cryptographic systems require specialized skills, skills that only a handful of people worldwide have. Since the authors observe that "We don't actually know how to create secure code," it's arguable that no one is qualified. But, to get even as good as the experts are today, a student has to start somewhere. This introductory text gets that student off to that start.

- wiredweird

5-0 out of 5 stars Long awaited update of the Practical Cryptography
I just got the book, skimmed over it and compared it with the 1st edition (Practical Cryptography).

First of all, if you don't have the 1st edition, this is an excellent buy. It's a "middle ground" book and probably the one you should start with if you are interested in practical cryptography. Then, depending on your interests and needs, you could proceed to a technically and mathematically much deeper (but somewhat obsolete) Applied Cryptography: Protocols, Algorithms, and Source Code in C, Second Edition or to some other direction using the foundation laid down in this book and then getting other book(s) about "hard-core" mathematics of cryptography or about "softer" methods of social engineering and real-life security.

I will now assume you know what the book is all about and that you are considering upgrading it so here are some quick things I hope to help you deciding:

- first of all, obviously, the errata from the 1st edition is incorporated into the text (there is no errata for the 2nd edition yet but keep checking on the book's home page [ [..] ]) which also contains the links from the book so you don't have to type them yourself while investigating
- the algorithms, protocols and formulas look the same but they might have minor tweaks, most of the stuff I looked up is the same as in the 1st edition
- the 2nd edition has 60 pages less and that's because the line spacing is smaller (the text is more dense) and not because some material has been omitted (at least I could not find anything significant being removed)
- one (really small) speculative mathematical subchapter has been removed (4.5.6 in 1st edition: Equation Solving Attacks); I guess the attack/math did not turn out to work
- the new addition to the team of the authors is a university professor and, as a result of that, the book has more of a textbook feel: exercises at the end of each chapter are added and the preface now contains example syllabi subchapter with three course proposals (6, 10 and 12 week) based on the book; it is also mentioned in the preface that the book is now "more suited for a self-study"
- the chapter layout is exactly the same as in 1st edition but off by one since "Our Design Philosophy" from the 1st edition has been presented a bit later as a subchapter of another chapter
- there are more references at the end (130 vs 97)
- minor: the cover is more boring, it really looks and, with the denser text inside, feels like a textbook while the 1st edition looked more like an engineering/hacking book

These are my very first quick and most likely incomplete and biased impressions, I might come back and update the review if I find anything significant. ... Read more

3. Understanding Cryptography: A Textbook for Students and Practitioners
by Christof Paar, Jan Pelzl
Hardcover: 372 Pages (2009-12-10)
list price: US$49.95 -- used & new: US$32.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 3642041000
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

Cryptography is now ubiquitous – moving beyond the traditional environments, such as government communications and banking systems, we see cryptographic techniques realized in Web browsers, e-mail programs, cell phones, manufacturing systems, embedded software, smart buildings, cars, and even medical implants. Today's designers need a comprehensive understanding of applied cryptography.

After an introduction to cryptography and data security, the authors explain the main techniques in modern cryptography, with chapters addressing stream ciphers, the Data Encryption Standard (DES) and 3DES, the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), block ciphers, the RSA cryptosystem, public-key cryptosystems based on the discrete logarithm problem, elliptic-curve cryptography (ECC), digital signatures, hash functions, Message Authentication Codes (MACs), and methods for key establishment, including certificates and public-key infrastructure (PKI). Throughout the book, the authors focus on communicating the essentials and keeping the mathematics to a minimum, and they move quickly from explaining the foundations to describing practical implementations, including recent topics such as lightweight ciphers for RFIDs and mobile devices, and current key-length recommendations.

The authors have considerable experience teaching applied cryptography to engineering and computer science students and to professionals, and they make extensive use of examples, problems, and chapter reviews, while the book’s website offers slides, projects and links to further resources. This is a suitable textbook for graduate and advanced undergraduate courses and also for self-study by engineers.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book!
I came across this book on accident; I was googling around for articles by Preneel and found this book, in which he wrote the foreword. Frankly, I hope this book eventually replaces most, if not all of the mainstream texts on cryptography. My only complaint about this book is that I no longer feel like one of the rare geniuses that thoroughly and completely understands cryptography. Thanks to this book, any dummy off the street can understand cryptography nearly as well as I do and they do not need a computer science or math degree. No prerequisite knowledge is required, other than the ability to read but there is plenty of math if you want to study it. (warning: I might be exaggerating a little. I enjoy math, but when I think about my brother who vomits at the site of math formulas, I wonder if I'm taking my math skills for granted?)

The following categories are scored 1-10. 1 being the lowest, through 10, the highest...

- Readability(i.e. authors style of writing, is he to the point, write clear, how does he approach the topic, does he motivate, etc...)
Score: 10
I personally do not care for analogies in cryptography books. If the author knows what he is talking about and can explain it, there is absolutely no need for stupid analogies. Another thing that drives me crazy is authors that "challenge you to think" too much. They can never get to the point and come right out and tell you something. Half the time I can't figure out if they either do not actually know what they are talking about or if they are really challenging you to think.Frankly, I am a professional with over 10 years of experience; I do not buy books so that authors can beat around the bush with their knowledge; which, by the way, I find condescending, because they think they are so damn smart for understanding it. When I pay money for a technical book, I do it with the expectation that the author is knowledgeable, qualified to write about the topic, and will not waste my time playing mind games with me. That is what is so surprising about this book; it clearly says "textbook" on the cover, which made me hesitate, thinking... maybe this is too elementary, or like many college textbooks, challenges you to think too much. However, contrary to my concerns, this book is to the point and carefully explains details that other authors seem to miss. In addition, it is very practical coverage and still challenging enough to be motivational, in other words, you do not have to drink twelve cups of coffee just to get through it.

- Organization
Score: 10
I have many cryptography books that talk about critical aspects of the encryption processes in isolation without tying them together; this book is very well organized in that respect.

- Real world Application (i.e. is this how it works in the real world or is this just theory that never gets used in practice)
Score: 9
This is another category that makes this book stand out.

- Thoroughness (i.e. how rigorous is the book, is it a comprehensive review of technologies)
Score: 7
Great Introduction to many areas!

- Application & Implementation on Computer (i.e. code, algorithms, data-types, programming language tips/tricks...etc)
Score: 5
Most books attempt to provide code but the code is based on static input and is poorly written, leaving you to wonder, why on earth did they even bother to try. Actually coding algorithms is not the focus of this book... I don't think it contains one line of code, but you can encrypt and decrypt, end-2-end, on paper if you want to, after reading it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Understanding Cryptography
This book targets the educational market and does a wonderful job. It introduces the basic concepts used in cryptography without going into too much detail. As such, it allows the reader to still see the wood for the trees (which is not equally true for other books on cryptography). Subjects like AES and ECC are explained exactly at the right level of abtraction. The book can be used by computer scientists, applied mathematicians, and electrical engineers. It can be used as a textbook in class or for self-study.

5-0 out of 5 stars Perfection!
It is a summer tradition for me to pick a technical topic, find a textbook that represents the subject from an introductory point of view, and self-study as much of it as I can. This summer, I picked cryptography. After searching all over the place for a decent introductory book on the subject, I stumbled upon this one. Even though it only had 2 reviews at the time, I could tell that it was exactly what I was looking for. After reading the first 6 chapters of this book, all I can say is this: WOW!

Cryptography lies at the intersection of mathematics, computer science, and electrical engineering. This book borrows ideas from all 3 fields in order to describe the core ideas of cryptography in a surprisingly elegant way. The tone of the book is formal enough so that the book isn't disorganized or overly verbose, but not too formal that it makes the readings a chore.

As stated above, the content of the book is highly organized. The first 5 chapters deal with symmetric algorithms, and the next 5 or so deal with asymmetric algorithms. The last few chapters deal with hash functions and message authentication algorithms. In between highly-technical sections, you will find informal topics that are concerned with general security topics, history, or similar subjects. These sections are a wonderful break from the technical ones, and make this highly technical book read somewhat like a novel.

The figures in this book are wonderful, and really help the reader understand the encryption algorithms more fully. For example, the DES algorithm is somewhat convoluted, but the figures in the chapter make it very simple to see exactly what is happening at each stage of the process. Every permutation, bit slicing operation, and XOR operation is clearly evident from the flow diagrams. These diagrams, the mathematical descriptions of the encryption schemes, and the interesting discussions that follow make learning cryptography very simple!

After reading chapters 3, 4, and 5, I decided to make my own DES implementation in Python. Even though the book gives a wonderful description of the inner-workings of the DES algorithm, it doesn't provide many plaintext-key-ciphertext examples that can be used to test out my own implementation. I had to search Google for quite some time and use many different references to make sure that my implementation worked correctly. Thus, one of my only complaints about this book is that it doesn't go into quite enough technical details at some parts. I felt the same way when trying to implement the 3DES algorithm with modes other than ECB. The book doesn't seem to provide an answer as to how to combine 3DES with OFB or CBC, and I haven't quite found an answer on Google yet. However, this isn't meant to be a handbook of cryptography. It is meant to provide an understandable introduction to cryptography which will make the reader be able to keep up with more advanced books. This book does that perfectly.

It doesn't matter too much, but I'll include this anyway: I found a tiny error in chapter 2, and I told the authors about it. They very VERY friendly, and were very appreciative. It doesn't really change the quality of the book, but its nice to know that the authors really care about the quality of their work.

If I had one more complaint, it would be that this book is so interesting that it keeps me up until 3 AM every night! I miss sleeping!

5-0 out of 5 stars Book is really about understanding cyptography!
First of all, this book is very well structured. That means one can read it as an absolute beginner in cryptography and find parts of the book which will make the subject of cryptography clear and interesting. Authors found a way to give just insight in often complicated cryptographic algorithms without involving rigorous mathematical concepts. On the other hand, this book is interesting even for professionals, especially practitioners who will find many timely, relevant things inside (cryptography relevant to RFID tags, smartcards, lightweight ciphers...).
Very well written and structured, this book is an excellent choice for coursebook. I used it as a textbook in crypto-course and students loved it!

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Course Book

I used the book "Understanding Cryptography" as text book for a basic course in cryptography. It is execellent structured, compact and clearly written and reaches the goal to be "Understandable". It offers a basic course, but it opens many possibilities to deepen the content and to explain the mathematical background. It fills a gap of well known cryptographic bestsellers, which are too detailled for a basic course. It is suitable also for engineers and students, who want to learn actual cryptography by self study. It contains the cryptographic mechanisms and algorithms, which are (or should be) used today (2010), for example presenting Elliptic Curve Cryptography not as an exotic cryptography, but as state of the art. Thanks to the authors, also for the well designed exercises.
... Read more

4. An Introduction to Mathematical Cryptography (Undergraduate Texts in Mathematics)
by Jeffrey Hoffstein, Jill Pipher, J.H. Silverman
Paperback: 524 Pages (2010-11-02)
list price: US$54.95 -- used & new: US$44.37
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1441926747
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description

An Introduction to Mathematical Cryptography provides an introduction to public key cryptography and underlying mathematics that is required for the subject. Each of the eight chapters expands on a specific area of mathematical cryptography and provides an extensive list of exercises.

It is a suitable text for advanced students in pure and applied mathematics and computer science, or the book may be used as a self-study. This book also provides a self-contained treatment of mathematical cryptography for the reader with limited mathematical background.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Very well written unlike most textbooks
I picked up this book to review before I recommend it to my team of system engineers. Most of the textbooks I review are a mess and seem to exist solely to egrandize the author and subidize a professor's lifestyle.
This book is a refreshing departure. The book is both readable and provides sufficient background to provide context to the reader.
Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Concepts explained well and plenty of examples to cement them
This is a fantastic book.The writing is simple and clear.Even if I skipped class for a week, I could sit down and read this book, confident I would receive an explanation that was both complete and easy-to-follow.I couldn't recommend it more.Even though we didn't cover elliptic curves in my class, I read the chapter anyway and found that I was able to understand anything in the chapter that I committed to learning.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
At least for the chapters that were studied by this reviewer, the authors of this book give an effective introduction to the mathematical theory used in cryptography at a level that can be approached by an undergraduate senior in mathematics. The field of cryptography is vast of course, and a book of this size could not capture it effectively. The topics of primary importance are represented however, and the authors do a fine job of motivating and explaining the needed concepts.
The authors give an elementary overview of elliptic curves over the complex numbers, and most importantly over finite fields whose characteristic is greater than 3. The case where the characteristic is equal to 2 is delegated to its own section. In discussing the arithmetic of elliptic curves over finite fields, the authors give a good motivation for Hasse's formula, which gives a bound for the number of points of the elliptic curve (over a finite field), but they do not go into the details of the proof. The Hasse formula is viewed in some texts as a "Riemann Hypothesis" for elliptic curves over finite fields, and was proven by Hasse in 1934. This reviewer has not studied Hasse's proof, but a contemporary proof relies on the Frobenius map and its separability, two notions that the authors do not apparently want to introduce at this level of book (however they do introduce the Frobenius map when discussing elliptic curves over F2). Separability is viewed in some texts in elliptic curves as more of a technical issue, which can be ignored at an elementary level. It arises when studying endomorphisms of elliptic curves of fields of non-zero characteristic, and involves defining rational functions. The Frobenius map is not separable, and this fact allows one to show that its degree is strictly greater than the number of points in its kernel. Taking the nth power of the Frobenius map and adding to it the endomorphism which simply multiplies elements by -1, one can show that the number of points of the elliptic curve is equal to the degree of this endomorphism. Just a few more arithmetical calculations establishes Hasse's estimate.
Some more of the highlights of this part of the book:
- The reminder that the fastest known algorithm to solve the elliptic curve discrete logarithm problem takes p^1/2 steps for a finite field Fp (i.e. the algorithms therefore are not really better than "black box" algorithms).
- The brief historical discussion on public key cryptography.
- The motivational discussion for the Lenstra algorithm using simple calculations that leads to a failed attempt to find the reciprocal of an integer modulo p. This failure is used to explain the workings of the Lenstra elliptic curve factorization algorithm in a way that it is better appreciated by the reader.
- The discussion on the Frobenius map in the context of elliptic curves over F2 and its use in finding the number of points of an elliptic curve over a finite field.
- The motivational discussion for the use of distortion maps, due to the degeneracy of the Weil pairing. The distortion maps are used to define a modified Weyl pairing, which is proved to be non-degenerate.
Some omissions:
- Algorithms used to calculate the number of points of an elliptic curve over a finite field that are more efficient than brute-force counting or estimation using Hasse's formula.
- The proof that the torsion points of order m can be written as the product of two cyclic groups of order m. The authors apparently do not want to get into the notions of unramified and separable "isogenies" between elliptic curves and Galois extensions, both of which are used in the proof that they reference. Isogenies are mentioned in a footnote to the discussion on distortion maps, since the latter are isogenies.
- The proof verifying certain properties of divisors, namely that they are equal if the corresponding rational functions are constant multiples of each other, and that the degree of a divisor is zero if its sum is the zero element of the elliptic curve. The proofs were no doubt omitted due to their dependence on techniques from algebraic geometry.
- Quantum cryptography. This is discussed very briefly in the last chapter, but the subject is mature enough to be presented at the undergraduate level.
- Cryptography based on non-Abelian groups. One good example would be cryptography based on the mathematical theory of knots and braids (the braid group is non-Abelian), even though this approach is in its infancy at the present time, and in almost all cases shown to be highly vulnerable to attacks. It could have been included in the last chapter or possibly as a long exercise.
- Hyperelliptic curves are discussed very briefly in the last chapter, but a full-fledged presentation could be done in the book without missing the targeted audience. Hyperelliptic curves are also mentioned after the discussion of the MOV algorithm, wherein the authors allude to the use of Weil descent to transfer the elliptic curve discrete logarithm problem to a discrete logarithm problem in a finite field F2^m when m is composite. The authors correctly don't want to elaborate on Weil descent in any more detail, since it requires a solid knowledge of field extensions and theory of algebraic varieties at a level that one obtains in a graduate course in algebraic geometry. Suffice it to say that the strategy of Weil descent involves finding a cover of the elliptic curve by a hyperelliptic curve that is defined over the extension of the ground field. This approach has been shown to be problematic for Koblitz curves, the latter of which are discussed in the book.

Note: This review is based on a reading of chapters 5 and 8 of the book.

... Read more

5. Cryptography and Network Security: Principles and Practice (5th Edition)
by William Stallings
Hardcover: 744 Pages (2010-01-24)
list price: US$111.40 -- used & new: US$69.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0136097049
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

William Stallings' Cryptography and Network Security: Principles and Practice, 5e is apractical survey of cryptography and network security with unmatched support for instructors and students.

In this age of universal electronic connectivity, viruses and hackers, electronic eavesdropping, and electronic fraud, security is paramount. This text provides a practical survey of both the principles and practice of cryptography and network security. First, the basic issues to be addressed by a network security capability are explored through a tutorial and survey of cryptography and network security technology. Then, the practice of network security is explored via practical applications that have been implemented and are in use today. An unparalleled support package for instructors and students ensures a successful teaching and learning experience.

The new edition has been updated to include coverage of the latest topics including expanded coverage of block cipher modes of operation, including authenticated encryption; revised and expanded coverage of AES; expanded coverage of pseudorandom number generation; new coverage of federated identity, HTTPS, Secure Shell (SSH) and wireless network security; completely rewritten and updated coverage of IPsec; and a new chapter on legal and ethical issues.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good conditon and timely delivery
The "Cryptography and Network Security (4th Edition)" book that I bought through Amazon was delivered timely. The book was also in the good condition that was said of it.

3-0 out of 5 stars Easy Read
An easy to read book on cryptography and security.Stallings illustrates concepts well, with lots of examples.If you're after mathematical depth, this book is not for you.This book is more about high level ideas and concepts.

1-0 out of 5 stars Worst writing ever
There has never been a more poorly written book, to my knowledge.The subject matter is fascinating and it is hard to imagine a less well-executed explanation of this material.It is difficult to count how many times that concepts are introduced and explained with statements that begin "It is obvious that..." - I've got news for the author, not much of those things are obvious, and smaller books explain the same material in much clearer and accessible language.I personally prefer the writings of Bruce Schneier on the subject.The rough thing is, the professor of the class I'm taking picked this for the textbook... I've had to download errata, search out information online, and buy other books to try to cover the material.One of the exercises is to brute-force attack a misprinted encrypted message, and one has to know to go to the author's website to download the corrected ciphertext.That totally sucks in an $80 book.

1-0 out of 5 stars aweful
This book is terrible.I am forced to read it for class and it's simply awful.If you want to learn cryptography get 'Applied Cryptography' by Bruce Schneier.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not outstanding
OK, this book has received prizes and stellar reviews here and elsewhere butpersonally I didn't like it very much. First, the text and the exercises lack mathematical depth. There are entire chapters, such as the one on AES, which add hardly anything to the official standard, and the book explanation is often harder to understand, and especially more ambiguous than the official standard of the protocols it is supposed to explain.
On the other hand, it is a relatively "polished" book, without too many errors or typos. Most of the time, it gives gives enough information to implement the algorithms it talks about. But it certainly doesn't give you enough to become a cryptographer, or to evaluate the security of a new algorithm, or things like that. ... Read more

6. Introduction to Modern Cryptography: Principles and Protocols (Chapman & Hall/CRC Cryptography and Network Security Series)
by Jonathan Katz, Yehuda Lindell
Hardcover: 552 Pages (2007-08-31)
list price: US$81.95 -- used & new: US$61.03
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1584885513
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Cryptography plays a key role in ensuring the privacy and integrity of data and the security of computer networks. Introduction to Modern Cryptography provides a rigorous yet accessible treatment of modern cryptography, with a focus on formal definitions, precise assumptions, and rigorous proofs.

The authors introduce the core principles of modern cryptography, including the modern, computational approach to security that overcomes the limitations of perfect secrecy. An extensive treatment of private-key encryption and message authentication follows. The authors also illustrate design principles for block ciphers, such as the Data Encryption Standard (DES) and the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), and present provably secure constructions of block ciphers from lower-level primitives. The second half of the book focuses on public-key cryptography, beginning with a self-contained introduction to the number theory needed to understand the RSA, Diffie-Hellman, El Gamal, and other cryptosystems. After exploring public-key encryption and digital signatures, the book concludes with a discussion of the random oracle model and its applications.

Serving as a textbook, a reference, or for self-study, Introduction to Modern Cryptography presents the necessary tools to fully understand this fascinating subject. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book for Self Learning
If you are looking for a book that will facilitate self learning in cryptography then this is the right book. It helps you understand the concepts easily and has a good number of exercise problems that will help you through your concepts.

4-0 out of 5 stars Book
Until the present moment, I did not receive this product yet. It was supposed to get it on April 16.

5-0 out of 5 stars Review for Katz and Lindell textbook on cryptography
The book was in good condition when it arrived, there were no signs of mishandling in transit.
The parcel arrived about a day later than expected. Price was ok, but my university offers a similar pricing, so it'll be beneficial if price for this book is lowered on amazon. I am surely thinking of of buying my next quarter textbooks on amazon.com.


5-0 out of 5 stars IMHO Best Book on Cryptography
This is a fantastic book, it was mandatory reading as part of my Masters in Information Security. I found it invaluable in understanding this seemingly 'mind-bending' subject.

I've bought numerous books on Crypto - however, this is the only one I've found that gets the balance between the maths and core principles/motivations spot on! I can't recommend this book enough, IMHO it's essential reading if you're pursuing a career in Information Security.

5-0 out of 5 stars The definitive guide to Cryptography
I used this book for a course on modern cryptography held by Prof. Persiano of the University of Salerno, Italy.
I read, consulted, and studied other books about cryptography, but 'INTRODUCTION TO MODERN CRYPTOGRAPHY' by Katz and Lindell is in my humble opinion THE BEST.
The book has a theoretical flavor, it is mathematically rigorous, but it is very readable and fluent, and presents the motivating discussions beneath each topic.
The book is fully self-contained, and gives the necessary background for each topic (for example there is a lot of basic computational number theory necessary for introducing the topic of 'public key').
The beauty of the book is in that the authors don't present a collection of protocols, with no links each other, but the flow is sequential and motivated (in contrast to books which present topics only for filling the pages).
All the theorems are proved and the treatment is rigorous, but the theory is developed from scratch, and the book is oriented to beginner students, though it presents also advanced stuff and is one of the most advanced book for beginners.
The main contents of the book are:

1) Perfect security and Shannon's theorem (information theoretic security)
2) Computational security, indistinguishability, CPA
3) Pseudorandomness
4) One-way functions, hard-core predicate, Levin's theorem
5) Message Authentication Codes
6) Costructions of Pseudorandom objects, AES, Substitution-Permutation networks
7) Relation between Private-Key, one-way functions and pseudrandomness.
8) Number theory for the cryptography
9) Computational number theory, factorization, square roots,discrete log,diffie-hellman problems
10) Public key,goldwasser-micali, el gamal, pallier, hybrid encryption, encryption schemes based on trapdoor permutations
11)Digital Signature Schemes
I wrote only some topics of the book following my taste, but the books contains much more.
The exercises left to the end of each chapters are good, and vary from easy to hard.
The book i read was in draft form, 320 pages long, but the final edition is about 500 pages long, cause addictional sections have been added.
Indeed in the introduction of my book the authors write that their planned to add to the final edition the following:

Elliptic curves
Sub-exponential factoring algorithms
The random oracle model and efficient cryptographic constructions

Given that the final edition is 200 pages longer that my draft i think that these sections have been added.

I advice this book to everyone who wants start the study of modern cryptography from a theoretic and rigorous point of view.
After you read Katz and Lindell i suggest you to read "Foundations of Cryptography" by Goldreich, but it is too advanced and its reading requires you already read Katz and Lindell.

... Read more

7. The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography
by Simon Singh
Paperback: 432 Pages (2000-08-29)
list price: US$16.00 -- used & new: US$7.40
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385495323
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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In his first book since the bestselling Fermat's Enigma, Simon Singh offers the first sweeping history of encryption, tracing its evolution and revealing the dramatic effects codes have had on wars, nations, and individual lives. From Mary, Queen of Scots, trapped by her own code, to the Navajo Code Talkers who helped the Allies win World War II, to the incredible (and incredibly simple) logisitical breakthrough that made Internet commerce secure, The Code Book tells the story of the most powerful intellectual weapon ever known: secrecy.

Throughout the text are clear technological and mathematical explanations, and portrayals of the remarkable personalities who wrote and broke the world's most difficult codes. Accessible, compelling, and remarkably far-reaching, this book will forever alter your view of history, what drives it, and how private that e-mail you just sent really is.
Amazon.com Review
People love secrets. Ever since the first word was written,humans have sent coded messages to each other. In The CodeBook, Simon Singh, author of the bestselling Fermat's Enigma,offers a peek into the world of cryptography and codes, from ancienttexts through computer encryption. Singh's compelling history is woventhrough with stories of how codes and ciphers have played a vital rolein warfare, politics, and royal intrigue. The major theme of TheCode Book is what Singh calls "the ongoing evolutionary battlebetween codemakers and codebreakers," never more clear than in thechapters devoted to World War II. Cryptography came of age duringthat conflict, as secret communications became critical to both sides'success.

Confronted with the prospect of defeat, the Alliedcryptanalysts had worked night and day to penetrate German ciphers. Itwould appear that fear was the main driving force, and that adversityis one of the foundations of successful codebreaking.

In the information age, the fear that drives cryptographicimprovements is both capitalistic and libertarian--corporations needencryption to ensure that their secrets don't fall into the hands ofcompetitors and regulators, and ordinary people need encryption tokeep their everyday communications private in a freesociety. Similarly, the battles for greater decryption power come fromsaid competitors and governments wary of insurrection.

The Code Book is an excellent primer for those wishing tounderstand how the human need for privacy has manifested itselfthrough cryptography.Singh's accessible style and clear explanationsof complex algorithms cut through the arcane mathematical detailswithout oversimplifying.--Therese Littleton ... Read more

Customer Reviews (278)

2-0 out of 5 stars Not for kindle
Do not buy it for kindle,it lacks most of the illustrations
Very good book but for kindle its just frustrating

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
This is an excellent introductions to cryptography and cryptanalisis. Well written, and with an easy to understand language, wven for non-english speakers like me.

4-0 out of 5 stars Murder plots, Indiana Joneses, and cyphers
I tremendously enjoyed reading this book, which explores perhaps the most fascinating aspect of cryptology: its role in society. From Queen Mary who was executed because her cypher was vulnerable to previously unheard-of frequency analysis, continuing with the war-altering influence of Enigma code breakers, to the advent of public-key cryptology in use today, the author paints a rich picture of historical events, personalities, and government interests.

Mr. Singh's account of the people behind the cypher breakthroughs was the most valuable to me. For example, while I had heard of the formidable Alan Turing, my CS education neglected to include the sad bit that he had committed suicide, on account of his being homosexual- a sin at the time. There are more gems of information like this to be found, making this book interesting to a wide array of people, from historians to conspirationalists.. For the latter group, the author for example offers the juicy bit that the British Empire condoned and actively spread the use of Enigmas, particularly after they had broken the code, lulling countries and colonies into a false sense of security.

I also liked the nod towards archeologists, a welcome relief from the otherwise politically and militarily motivated encryption landscape. I learned more about Knossos in Crete from this book than when I went there in person!

Here's the best part: the text is easily understandable. Even for someone very rusty in his/her high school math, it is accessible as the author assumes practically nothing and even defines concepts such as prime numbers and modulus arithmetic. The precise example of an RSA code exchange is relegated to the appendix, meanwhile the author found an analogy involving buckets of paint. Brilliant.

If I have to find one flaw with Singh's work, it is the age of the publication. 11 years spell "ancient" in the computer world and it's nothing short of bizarre to read that "the Internet is in its infancy" when I can access my bank accounts on a remote island - on my cell phone. An update of the last two chapters would do this otherwise priceless book good.

5-0 out of 5 stars Interesting Read
I bought this book several years ago and enjoyed every aspect of it. It is a nice blend to tech and history. This is a great book for anyone interested in encipherment of information.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great read.
This is a well written book from an author with great knowledge on the topic. Don't be put off by all the talk about 'Where is the American side of the story' because in all honesty it's nice to read a book which is not so pro American for a change! A breath of fresh air. ... Read more

8. Cryptography Decrypted
by H. X. Mel, Doris M. Baker
Paperback: 384 Pages (2000-12-31)
list price: US$49.99 -- used & new: US$34.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0201616475
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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(Pearson Education) A tutorial in digital cryptography, for readers at any level of experience. Requires no technical or mathematical expertise, but does include appendices for those who have it. Topics covered include public and private keys, hashes and message digests, cryptographic attacks, and digital signatures. Softcover. DLC: Computer security. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (38)

5-0 out of 5 stars Good introduction to foundations of cryptogrpahy
A very thorough introduction to crytopgraphy. Illustrations very helpful in explaining the concepts. A lot of information in a relatively concise book, considering the possible extensiveness of the topic. Appendix included to satisfy those who wish a bit more in-depth explanation. Not one of those books that requires a PHD in set theory to comprehend.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book for beginners for sure
This book lays out the concept very well and book is fun to read. I really loved reading the book. The underline mathematics is explained with enough detail for one to appreciate RSA and other encryption methods.A Great buy

5-0 out of 5 stars Super Supreme!
Occasionally, in this crummy, heartless world, someone actually gives a damn.And when they give a damn, great things happen.This book is one example of that.

H.X. Mel has written a truly great book here -- one that is based on the premise of actually caring about the reader enough to compel a want to make them understand.In this case, Mel wants the reader to understand encryption, and succeeds.

You'll find no intimidating language or anything else of the sort here.What Mel is trying to accomplish is pure understanding, by any means necessary.And he/she succeeds.

If you want to really understand encryption (and have a *GASP* fun time reading about it in the process), get this book.If you want to not understand encryption and be intimidated by impersonal, encrypted jargonizing, then buy a different book instead.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best explanation of public key algorithm
It's been very difficult for me to understand having a key that encrypts something but can't decrypt it.The math and concepts behind RSA are far from easy.I've been looking for a book that explains it to the layman.This books makes an heroic effort, in its appendix, and has gotten me farther than any other book.This book bridges general concepts to real world techniques.The book uses many creative ideas to explain these concepts.

5-0 out of 5 stars quick reference on PKI
This book is just what I needed - a quick tutorial on PKI.It is easy to read and the examples are straight forward. The book is an excellent place to start if you need to get up to speed on cryptography. ... Read more

9. Practical Cryptography
by Niels Ferguson, Bruce Schneier
Paperback: 432 Pages (2003-03-28)
list price: US$50.00 -- used & new: US$9.59
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0471223573
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Security is the number one concern for businesses worldwide. The gold standard for attaining security is cryptography because it provides the most reliable tools for storing or transmitting digital information. Written by Niels Ferguson, lead cryptographer for Counterpane, Bruce Schneier's security company, and Bruce Schneier himself, this is the much anticipated follow-up book to Schneier's seminal encyclopedic reference, Applied Cryptography, Second Edition (0-471-11709-9), which has sold more than 150,000 copies.
Niels Ferguson (Amsterdam, Netherlands) is a cryptographic engineer and consultant at Counterpane Internet Security. He has extensive experience in the creation and design of security algorithms, protocols, and multinational security infrastructures. Previously, Ferguson was a cryptographer for DigiCash and CWI. At CWI he developed the first generation of off-line payment protocols. He has published numerous scientific papers.
Bruce Schneier (Minneapolis, MN) is Founder and Chief Technical Officer at Counterpane Internet Security, a managed-security monitoring company. He is also the author of Secrets and Lies: Digital Security in a Networked World (0-471-25311-1). ... Read more

Customer Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
I received it within short time, like 3 to 5 days. it was fast.

the quality of book was very good. no damage whatsoever on the book.

thumbs up to the sender. keep up the good work.

and the contents are as usual very good for beginners

5-0 out of 5 stars Cryptography Explained for the Practical Implementation
Guru Bruce Schneier teams with fellow guru Niels Ferguson to explain the practical implementaion of cryptography.

In his first book, Applied Cryptography, Schneier dissected how cryptography worked. But there was a lot of hand-waving, such as "Alice implements a secure RNG" which worked for theoretical knowledge of cryptography, but weren't of much use to a programmer who needs to design something. Practical Cryptography is the "in depth" sequel to Applied Cryptography, and explains in detail a lot of the nuts and bolts of actually implementing good cryptography.

5-0 out of 5 stars If you write software this book will help you understand cryptography
This book really does explain the practical side of cryptography and writing cryptographic software.

The authors take the readers with them as they design a secure communication system using existing algorithms and standards.You look over the shoulders of two experts in the field as they make decisions (e.g. AES vs. Serpent vs. Twofish) and explain them (e.g. AES is the IBM of algorithms, Serpent is the most secure, and Twofish is fast like AES but without the vulnerabilities).

There is an entire chapter devoted to "Implementation Issues" which includes some of the best information on software design I have ever read.In addition to the cryptography related information, the authors point out some flaws in traditional software development methodology.In fact, this book should be required reading for every computer science student and every practicing software engineer.

If you have had trouble understanding cryptography and cryptographic algorithms in the past, this book will fill in the gaps.The book very well written, which is a rarity in the field of cryptography.If you are a crypto-phile, you can actually read this book for entertainment.

3-0 out of 5 stars Biased to Schneier's algorithms
This can be an annoying book for a serious developer, but I do know Writing a secure cryptosystem is very hard. People should be aware that it is hard, and they are likely to make mistakes. It isn't something that should be attempted lightly. If you are doing some actual work, it's not a good one. The book does not cover sufficient mathematic knowledge, and the edit is bit horrible as well. The authors chose to support their own algorithm shedding less light on AES and even RSA. That really made me stop reading this book.
The author's other book "Applied Cryptography" is still my favorite.

3-0 out of 5 stars Self contradictory and selflauding
From the very first pages, authors emphasize the need for public algorithms and peer review. Yet, the book is full of suggestions that appear first time in the book. They even take time to give fancy names to their new proposals. It is typical to see things like "While writing this chaper we came up with this new random number generator...". Well, the authors could have used some of public scrutiny they are so fond of.

The authors are extremely biased against algorithms designed by others. For example, they bend over backwards to blow some generic weaknesses of AES out of proportions. They even add a scary story of a bored PhD student offhandedly breaking AES. I think this not only unfair but also a bit unethical to direct generic critisism to a design and then pretent it does not apply to their own.

They must be really pissed off when their own algorithm was beaten by AES in the NIST competition.

The book is useful if all you want is a light reading about security and you can manage to read it with a grain of salt.

... Read more

10. Cryptography: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)
by Fred Piper, Sean Murphy
Paperback: 160 Pages (2002-07-15)
list price: US$11.95 -- used & new: US$6.25
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0192803158
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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This book is a clear and informative introduction to cryptography and data protection--subjects of considerable social and political importance. It explains what algorithms do, how they are used, the risks associated with using them, and why governments should be concerned. Important areas are highlighted, such as Stream Ciphers, block ciphers, public key algorithms, digital signatures, and applications such as e-commerce. This book highlights the explosive impact of cryptography on modern society, with, for example, the evolution of the internet and the introduction of more sophisticated banking methods. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent read
this book is exactly what it says it is and is excellent at that task.i highly recommend this book to a sys-admin that wants to understand the basics of encryption without being an expert, anyone interested in cryptograms, or anyone with just a casual interest in the history, and concepts of cryptography.

this book is not designed for mathematicians or security experts looking deep inner workings of algorithms.

the book is easy to follow without the need for a technical or mathematics background and gives occasional problems for the reader to solve which will be of interest to anyone who enjoys cryptograms.

as a network engineer, i found this an enjoyable pleasure read which shed some light on the encryption protocols employed on some of the gear i manage.

4-0 out of 5 stars covers the main ideas, with little maths needed
The book is good as befits its subtitle. Indeed, a very short introduction, with only a minimal evocation of maths background. But there is enough qualitative explanation so that you can understand the broad historical development. From the Caesar Cipher to a Simple Substitution Cipher to a Vigenere Square Cipher. Then, the text goes into modern ideas, all of which involve using computers to encrypt and decrypt. Notably the invention of the public key system. Truly quite different from all that preceded it.

There is also a brief foray into quantum computing. Here, it is mostly conceptual; discussing the possible potential, since current implementations are very rudimentary. The text has no mention of man in the middle attacks and how to guard against these. Pity. Because while this is a very hard attack to perform, if it can done, then it is very hard to defend against. One of the promises of quantum computing is that it inherently offers a simple detection, based on quantum interference by the attacker. ... Read more

11. Cryptography: The Science of Secret Writing
by Laurence D. Smith
Paperback: 164 Pages (1955-06-01)
list price: US$8.95 -- used & new: US$4.87
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 048620247X
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Elementary account of ciphers, history, types, etc., with 151 examples of ciphers and codes. Solutions. Good introduction for beginners.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fun
Fun and cheap. Read and finished this book during a 3 hour visit doing my jury duty ,duties .

5-0 out of 5 stars Great intro to Cryptography
This book is a fantastic introduction to the art and science of Cryptography. It shows you in detail various ciphers used throughout history, and how to decipher them. Then it has a problem solving section that starts small and builds until you are trying to solve incredibly complex problems. It truly challenges and expands the mind. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in learning cryptography.

5-0 out of 5 stars An interesting look at encryption before the computer
This book provides a very fascinating look at substitution and transposition ciphers of the WWII era.It provides detailed instructions on how each cipher is implemented, and provides a chapter on the cryptanalysis of ciphers as well as a chapter of ciphers for the reader to break.A great text for the study of manual cipher systems.

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent introduction to cryptograhpy
This is an excellent beginners' book. It has clear demonstrations of early cryptograhpic methods and how they are solved. Each method is accompanied with a set of problems which are well designed to give beginners somedecryption skills. ... Read more

12. Cryptography: Theory and Practice, Third Edition (Discrete Mathematics and Its Applications)
by Douglas R. Stinson
Hardcover: 616 Pages (2005-11-01)
list price: US$69.95 -- used & new: US$55.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1584885084
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
First introduced in 1995, Cryptography: Theory and Practice garnered enormous praise and popularity, and soon became the standard textbook for cryptography courses around the world. The second edition was equally embraced, and enjoys status as a perennial bestseller. Now in its third edition, this authoritative text continues to provide a solid foundation for future breakthroughs in cryptography.


The art and science of cryptography has been evolving for thousands of years. Now, with unprecedented amounts of information circling the globe, we must be prepared to face new threats and employ new encryption schemes on an ongoing basis. This edition updates relevant chapters with the latest advances and includes seven additional chapters covering:

  • Pseudorandom bit generation in cryptography
  • Entity authentication, including schemes built from primitives and special purpose "zero-knowledge" schemes
  • Key establishment including key distribution and protocols for key agreement, both with a greater emphasis on security models and proofs
  • Public key infrastructure, including identity-based cryptography
  • Secret sharing schemes
  • Multicast security, including broadcast encryption and copyright protection


    Providing mathematical background in a "just-in-time" fashion, informal descriptions of cryptosystems along with more precise pseudocode, and a host of numerical examples and exercises, Cryptography: Theory and Practice, Third Edition offers comprehensive, in-depth treatment of the methods and protocols that are vital to safeguarding the mind-boggling amount of information circulating around the world.
  • Amazon.com Review
    Douglas R. Stinson's Cryptography: Theory and Practiceis a mathematically intensive examination of cryptography, includingciphers, the Data Encryption Standard (DES), public key cryptography,one-way hash functions, and digital signatures. Stinson's explicationof "zero-sum proofs"--a process by which one person letsanother person know that he or she has a password without actuallyrevealing any information--is especially good.

    If you are new tothe math behind cryptography but want to tackle it, the author coversall of the required background to understand the real mathematicshere. Cryptography includes extensive exercises with eachchapter and makes an ideal introduction for any math-literate personwilling to get acquainted with this material. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (14)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Cryptography Teaching Textbook
    The textbook introduces various areas of cryptography to undergraduate and graduate students in mathematics and computer science. It covers classical cryptosystems, Shannon's approach to perfect secrecy, block ciphers and hash functions. Public-key cryptography, signature schemes and pseudo random number generators are also discussed in detail. Other chapters discuss key distribution and entity authentication. The book is geared toward serving as a class-room textbook with numerous solved examples and exercises. It genuinely deserves its reputation as an indispensable textbook for cryptography teaching.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A good reference
    I may not intend to read this book from cover to cover but would rather use it as a reference. As an engineer I like chapter 2 Shannon's Theory which gives an answer to why a cryptosytem is secure.

    Personally I am doing the job related to network security and perfer to recommend the book by C. Kaufman, R. Perlman, and M. Speciner:Network Security: Private Communication in a Public World, Second Edition.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good book after Schneier's Non-Mathematical Treatment
    If you are an engineer trying to learn crypto, maybe get a book on number theory to go with this book. It'd be nice if there were fewer errors and more worked out problems, as well.

    Overall a good effort but written by a mathematican so you needa book like Schenier's that explains how to use the tools. Maybe Scheier is the one I'd read first. Then readStinson's to understand how the tools work because Scheier's book is mathematically barren.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Volume III ofthe Definitive Work
    This book takes a fairly rigorous mathematical approach to cryptography. It is intended for upper level undergraduate and graduate students in mathematics, computer science and engineering. I suspect only the quite mathematically inclined computer science and engineering students will find this book helpful. This is not a Boy Scout how to do secret messages book, but a book that will give the professional the data needed to implement cryptographic software, and the mathematician hints on both code breaking and creating.

    This is the third edition of this book. With the second edition, the author got rid of several several subjects that were not right at the core of cryptography, with the intend of doing a second volume. Instead, the art and scienct of cryptography has changed so fast during the past few years that a two volume approach isn't practical. Instead, he has produced this third edition that picks back up many of the subjects from the first edition. All of the material in this edition has been extensively re-written to incorporate the latest theories and practices.

    In recent years the use of cryptography has increased by several orders of magnitude. Every time we buy something with a credit card, use on line banking, send a password to access e-mail, we use cryptography. With this growth, the interest at software companies, universities, and other places has grown accordingly and this text has become the standard by which others are compared.

    Highly recommended for the serious student.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Could be a great book .... but it falls short
    As other people have pointed out, this is not a mathematics book, and it is not an algorithm (recipies) book. It could be a great book for people that are interested in learning these tools to actually use them, either in a research or product development context (something besides homework). Unfortunately, the number of typos, in key mathematical expressions AND PORTIONS OF THE EXPLANATIONS is staggering. Go to the author's web page and you will find that some chapters, like 4 for example, average more than one typo per page (and some of these 'typos' are full sentences, or math expressions that do not look like anything that is actually printed on the page). If you do not have that errata sheet handy, you will waste a lot of time trying to understand the text, or trying to solve the exercises. If you are trying to learn from this book, without attending a class and without the errata, you will simply give up. It is a real shame because it has all the makings of a great book. ... Read more

    13. Introduction to Cryptography with Mathematical Foundations and Computer Implementations (Discrete Mathematics and Its Applications)
    by Alexander Stanoyevitch
    Hardcover: 669 Pages (2010-08-09)
    list price: US$89.95 -- used & new: US$66.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1439817634
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    Product Description

    From the exciting history of its development in ancient times to the present day, Introduction to Cryptography with Mathematical Foundations and Computer Implementations provides a focused tour of the central concepts of cryptography. Rather than present an encyclopedic treatment of topics in cryptography, it delineates cryptographic concepts in chronological order, developing the mathematics as needed.

    Written in an engaging yet rigorous style, each chapter introduces important concepts with clear definitions and theorems. Numerous examples explain key points while figures and tables help illustrate more difficult or subtle concepts. Each chapter is punctuated with "Exercises for the Reader;" complete solutions for these are included in an appendix. Carefully crafted exercise sets are also provided at the end of each chapter, and detailed solutions to most odd-numbered exercises can be found in a designated appendix. The computer implementation section at the end of every chapter guides students through the process of writing their own programs. A supporting website provides an extensive set of sample programs as well as downloadable platform-independent applet pages for some core programs and algorithms.

    As the reliance on cryptography by business, government, and industry continues and new technologies for transferring data become available, cryptography plays a permanent, important role in day-to-day operations. This self-contained sophomore-level text traces the evolution of the field, from its origins through present-day cryptosystems, including public key cryptography and elliptic curve cryptography.

    ... Read more

    14. Foundations of Cryptography: Volume 1, Basic Tools
    by Oded Goldreich
    Paperback: 396 Pages (2007-01-18)
    list price: US$50.00 -- used & new: US$45.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0521035368
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    Cryptography is concerned with the conceptualization, definition and construction of computing systems that address security concerns.This book presents a rigorous and systematic treatment of the foundational issues: defining cryptographic tasks and solving new cryptographic problems using existing tools.It focuses on the basic mathematical tools: computational difficulty(one-way functions), pseudorandomness and zero-knowledge proofs.Rather than describing ad-hoc approaches, this book emphasizes the clarification of fundamental concepts and the demonstration of the feasibility of solving cryptographic problems. It is suitable for use in a graduate course on cryptography and as a reference book for experts. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (5)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Rich but the language is difficult
    After reading some of chapters, it seems to me that it is a bit difficult to understand even some easy concepts. The book is rich, but again it lacks of good explanations at some points.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A must have for people doing research in theoretical crypto
    This is a sequel of Foundations of Cryptography, Vol 1, which covers theoretical proofs of signatures, encryptions, and more.
    The price of $75.00 is a bit prohibitive at the moment, and the contents are a little bit dense to follow, but this is an important book to have if you want to do research in theoretical crypto.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fundamental book for anyone working with cryptography
    This book, that you can see some parts on the authors site, is a essencial on everyone desk working on security and cryptography. Itis not a book of recipes of how to build a secure cryptographic environment but a fundamental book on the basics of cryptography and cryptographic protocols.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Great idea -- needs a good editor!
    This book hits some extremes in good and bad.The good is easy:There are few (no?) other books that fill the niche of theoretical cryptography.There are some excellent lecture notes from Bellare and Goldwasser that are available on the web, but they don't go into the detailed motivation of topics that Goldreich does.The topics that Goldreich has chosen cover a lot of important areas, and he has done a great job of pulling out the best, most essential results to present.

    However, the bad part is that the writing is simply horrible.There seems to be little planning and things simply don't flow at all.Here's a specific example, which is so bad as to almost be funny:There's a huge use of footnotes for side comments, mostly because of this "stream of consciousness" writing that doesn't work things in properly.The first footnote in chapter 4 says, believe it or not, "See Footnote 13".Huh?So I go digging through the later part of the chapter, looking desperately for this gem of knowledge that will be in footnote 13, and what is it?The definition of a graph!Now come on -- chapter 4 of a book, where we've been dealing with advanced topics in computer science, and they feel the need to define a graph!?!?!Through several levels of indirection in footnotes?Come on guys, what editor let that one through?

    Oded is a great computer scientist, and a good guy, but please, PLEASE get a good editor for the other volumes, or maybe even a good writer to team up with!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Superb presentation of the theoretical foundations.
    We all know what it means for an algorithm to compute a function, but what does it mean for an encryption scheme to be secure? Traditionally, cryptographic schemes were suggested and attacked based on ad-hoc criterias, for lack of a proper theoretical setting. The last two decades have seen enormous progress in this respect. New notions were devised to harness the computational difficulty of problems in a constructive way to achieve security (in various senses) against all adversaries. This enabled the definition of a host of well-defined cryptographic "objects" and investigation of their existence and relations.

    The planned 3-volume series aims to provide a thorough presentation of the theory, written by a dominant figure in the field. This first volume introduces the basic notions: one-way functions, pseudorandom generators, various zero-knowledge proof systems and related concepts. Curiously, common cryptographic objects such as encryption schemes and signature schemes are only briefly discussed in an appendix -- the author has chosen to postpone these to the Volume 2 in the interest of in-depth discussion of the simpler objects. Hence this volume does not stand well on its own, and until Volume 2 is published the impatient reader may be disappointed. Fortunately, drafts of Volume 2 are available on-line: www.wisdom.weizmann.ac.il/~oded/foc-vol2.html

    The presentation style is a tour de force of didactic sensitivity. The subject material is often problematic, because the mental gymnastics required are not quite like any other field. The author is fully aware of this, and provides ample intuitive discussion and motivation to help the reader through the more technical parts (without compromising rigorousness). A clear effort is made to present, or at least mention and reference, all interesting results pertaining to the discussion. This makes the book invaluable as a reference, though it could have been overwhelming had not the author taken care to separate these excursions from the main discussion. The exercises are usually well-considered and rewarding, and unlike some textbooks you won't find important results disguised as an optional exercise.

    Those interested primarily in practical applications of cryptography may well find this book too abstract and irrelevant; the relation between this book and Schneier's "Applied Cryptography" is roughly like that between organic chemistry and cooking. However, for those taking academic interest in the field or trying to devise novel cryptographic schemes, this book is an effective way to get a solid grasp on the theory, and a delightful way to understand this exciting branch of computer science. ... Read more

    15. Cryptography for Dummies
    by Chey Cobb
    Paperback: 336 Pages (2004-01-30)
    list price: US$29.99 -- used & new: US$17.01
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0764541889
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    * Cryptography is the most effective way to achieve data security and is essential to e-commerce activities such as online shopping, stock trading, and banking
    * This invaluable introduction to the basics of encryption covers everything from the terminology used in the field to specific technologies to the pros and cons of different implementations
    * Discusses specific technologies that incorporate cryptography in their design, such as authentication methods, wireless encryption, e-commerce, and smart cards
    * Based entirely on real-world issues and situations, the material provides instructions for already available technologies that readers can put to work immediately
    * Expert author Chey Cobb is retired from the NRO, where she held a Top Secret security clearance, instructed employees of the CIA and NSA on computer security and helped develop the computer security policies used by all U.S. intelligence agencies ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (10)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A good "for dummies" book.
    A good introduction to how cryptography works. Very simple, yet accurate. It covers basically all the fundamentals of how cryptography works, how it's used, and how it *should* be used. Math is kept extremely minimal.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great intro to Crypto
    This book will open the eyes of anyone who wants to learn about the subject.And the Author does a great job of making it a fun read too.The reason i bought this book, it to understand whats up with digital certificates.My eyes were opened when i found out that many certificates are not cross compatible with all apps... its hundreds of facts like this, that will help you to finally figure it out everything you need to know to make it happen for you. Especially with PGP (its free and it rocks)

    1-0 out of 5 stars Disappointing Read
    This book lacks credibility.It gives a weak high level outline for crypto and has some very embarrassing inaccuracies when detail is attempted to be covered.It's also shockingly dated in places and very poorly written with disorganized statements.Save your money and visit some websites that would give you better general and specialized information and not cost you a bean.This book is not value for money.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
    Not a good book in many ways.Lots of slapdash comment, quite a few innacuracies and badly edited.Seems like it was rushed out to fill a gap in the market.I've worked in banks for years, and followed cyrypto development and written crypto policy, we bought this book to introduce the subject to some of our new guys, and we quickly fell out of favor with the content.

    Save your dollars and buy something a little bit more credible!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Pretty Good Intro to Cryptography
    I've stumbled across cryptography for about the past year, so recently I decided to go ahead and learn some basics (as I think the subject and InfoSec is really interesting). Most cryptography books out there are for the advanced and are mathematically rigorous. While I gladly welcome math, I needed an overview to bring me up to speed, prepping me for more intermediate (and eventually advanced) texts later.

    I've never read a Dummies book dealing with computer technology before, because although they're written for absolute novices, the low-level writing style irritates me, usually takes too long to get to the "interesting stuff", and the "yippity-skippity!" attitude will eventually make me go seek a more advanced text. Basically, Dummies books "hold your hand", and if this is what you need, they're great! But if not, they can be rather slow for you (as for me).

    However, Cryptography for Dummies is pretty good, aside from a few misses. By this being a Dummies book, the impression of this text being for complete neophytes is false - if you don't have any experience with basic computer science topics (e.g. binary, binary-to-decimal conversions, bits/bytes/words, etc.), the first couple chapters may be a little hard to understand, as the author assumes you at least know that stuff.

    Aside from that, the author does a good job explaining the basic topics one needs to understand cryptography and its inner-workings. However, the author's writing style leaves much to be desired at times. At points, I found myself scratching my head, re-reading passages several times, trying to figure out what the author meant. At times when he should explain the nuances of something, he doesn't, leaving you to go, "HUH?" (A good example of this are the early parts where he talks about keys but doesn't explain what a key is or how they interact with other parts of a cryptographic system.)

    There are other sections where the author leaves entire descriptions of things out, where you'll have to figure it out for yourself. Perhaps this is purposeful, so he won't get too far into the topic, as this book is basically an overview. Something else I noticed too is the vast amount of errors the book has! I'm not sure if Dummies has an 'Errata' section on its site.

    While this book is by no means a complete text (probably not even a 1/3-complete text), overall, it's good for those who want an overview of the subject, and plan on venturing further, as I do. ... Read more

    16. Secure Programming Cookbook for C and C++: Recipes for Cryptography, Authentication, Input Validation & More
    by John Viega, Matt Messier
    Paperback: 792 Pages (2003-07-14)
    list price: US$74.99 -- used & new: US$19.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0596003943
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    Secure Programming Cookbook for C and C++ is an important new resource for developers serious about writing secure code. It contains a wealth of solutions to problems faced by those who care about the security of their applications. It covers a wide range of topics, including safe initialization, access control, input validation, symmetric and public key cryptography, cryptographic hashes and MACs, authentication and key exchange, PKI, random numbers, and anti-tampering. The rich set of code samples provided in the book's more than 200 recipes will help programmers secure the C and C++ programs they write for both Unix®(including Linux®) and Windows® environments. The book's web site supplements the book by providing a place to post new recipes, including those written in additional languages like Perl, Java, and Python. Monthly prizes will reward the best recipes submitted by readers. The Secure Programming Cookbook for C and C++ is destined to become an essential part of any developer's library, a code companion developers will turn to again and again as they seek to protect their systems from attackers and reduce the risks they face in today's dangerous world. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (13)

    1-0 out of 5 stars Completely useless for PKI programming
    The title "Secure Programming Cookbook" is more than a reach, but downright misleading. I bought this book fully expecting to find recipes for using OpenSSL's crypto library to generate CSRs, handle private CA functions such as create Digital ID Certificates, and other functions actually used in writing secure applications. What I found was the author spending more time talking about products and services offered by Verisign, and very little code whatsoever. There is some code for verifying a certificate, and downloading a revocation list, but sadly I've found more useful information reading OpenSSL's lackluster man pages than I have in this book. If you're looking for high level information about "how stuff works", or some simple command-line help, this book will suit you. If you're looking for content living up to the book's title - content that would actually help you implement things like PKI - you'll unfortunately come up short.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good developer reference
    This is a well-written and example oriented book for C/C++ programmers that covers secure programming in all aspects. I had been using this book for last one year now and It helps me as a quick reference and also real source code demonstrating practical approaches that can be incorporated into their software projects.

    The book needs a little update but still helps any aspiring C/C++ programmer involved with crypto.

    3-0 out of 5 stars a good reference if you've really got to be secure
    If you are not sure that you need this book, then you probably don't. But if there is something it the table of contents that you've got to know, and you've got to get it right, then this would be a good book to have. Chapter 12 on Anti-Tampering was a really enjoyable read, though probably a futile task.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book for anyone using C
    This is simply a great book for anyone using C or C++.

    These guys literally wrote the book on secure code.

    Read it!

    3-0 out of 5 stars A task-oriented reference guide
    This well-written book covers a lot of topics that I have not read in other books.

    Its strengths include:

    --Good coverage of cryptography programming
    --Task-oriented solutions to specific programming problems
    --Easy to navigate "cookbook" style ("with recipes" as the authors call them)

    However, some areas of improvement might be:

    --Could use more coverage of important subjects (buffer overflows, etc.)
    --spends a lot of space on narrower examples (like explaining certain APIs that are documented well online)
    --Sometimes jumps into material without much background explanation (which was confusing for me)

    It is probably not the first book you should read on the subject. This is more of a recipe guide that is useful if you get stuck on coding a particular topic that happens to be covered. The authors have done a good job of explaining what coverage they do and don't include. ... Read more

    17. Cryptography in C and C++, Second Edition
    by Michael Welschenbach
    Hardcover: 504 Pages (2005-05-25)
    list price: US$79.99 -- used & new: US$29.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1590595025
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description

    This book covers everything you need to know to write professional-level cryptographic code. This expanded, improved second edition includes about 100 pages of new material as well as numerous improvements to the original text.

    The chapter about random number generation has been completely rewritten, and the latest cryptographic techniques are covered in detail. Furthermore, this book covers the recent improvements in primality testing.

    ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (11)

    5-0 out of 5 stars cryptography for cryptographers
    Very complete book ; but is oriented on mathemathic alghoritm to create very hight performance code.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Good book with valuable source code
    This book is really good for beginners in cryptography. However, the most useful thing in the book is the source code, which can be used for programming your own crypto protocols. I would give this 5/5 rating.

    5-0 out of 5 stars practical guide to software implementation of cryptography
    This book offers a practical and relatively easy to read description of implementing cryptography algorithms, especially RSA, in software.Most books in the field are highly mathematical.This book covers all of the necessary mathematics, but also explains how to efficiently implement the mathematics in C.It covers many of the real-life issues in building security software.As a researcher in the field, I found the book very helpful.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
    Don't even try to do crypto routines in C/C++ without this book.

    It will save you a lot of heartache.

    Read it!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good book -- Wrong title
    If truth in titling were a crime, someone would be in leg-irons over this one. This book should be entitled, "A Detailed Account of the Construction of a Large-Precision Number Library of the Sort that can be Used for RSA and Similar Cryptographic Systems, with a few Examples." The book fulfills this latter title exceptionally well.

    The great majority of this book is a detailed, step-by-step account of the how the author constructed a C-language big-number library. It treats wrapping the C-libraries with C++ classes as a separate chapter -- nice touch. This treatise is thorough, well-written, and engaging. Nicely done. It is written from a mathematicians perspective, and its mathematical underpinnings may repel some programmers, but they need not fear. In the end the C-code is well-explained.

    The only "cryptography" of note is a chapter on implementing RSA with the library. Indeed, the great majority of implementing RSA and similar ciphers is creating the big-number libraries. The RSA chapter is, fortunately, much more than a simple example. It is an excellent treatise of the pitfalls in implementing RSA. That is, RSA is more than a "simple example." If you are implemeting RSA with any big-number library, this chapter alone is worth the cost of admission.

    There is a chapter on AES (Rijndael) cipher, but it is out of place here and an obvious paste-on, probably a last minute, hot-button item required by the publisher. It really has nothing you can't get from the original NIST documents on AES.

    I'm willing to believe that the title and AES paste-on are the fault of the publisher, because otherwise Welschenbach did an excellent job -- lots of hard and careful work, well documeted. With a title-change, I'd give it a 5-star.

    The question in the end is: Why would you want this book? Apart from general interest, the audiences that come to my mind are those who are constructing such libraries on their own, and those who need to use the software included with the book (on a non-commercial basis -- the software license prohibits commercial use). ... Read more

    18. Beginning Cryptography with Java
    by David Hook
    Paperback: 480 Pages (2005-08-19)
    list price: US$39.99 -- used & new: US$14.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0764596330
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    Beginning Cryptography with Java

    While cryptography can still be a controversial topic in the programming community, Java has weathered that storm and provides a rich set of APIs that allow you, the developer, to effectively include cryptography in applications-if you know how.

    This book teaches you how. Chapters one through five cover the architecture of the JCE and JCA, symmetric and asymmetric key encryption in Java, message authentication codes, and how to create Java implementations with the API provided by the Bouncy Castle ASN.1 packages, all with plenty of examples. Building on that foundation, the second half of the book takes you into higher-level topics, enabling you to create and implement secure Java applications and make use of standard protocols such as CMS, SSL, and S/MIME.

    What you will learn from this book

    • How to understand and use JCE, JCA, and the JSSE for encryption and authentication
    • The ways in which padding mechanisms work in ciphers and how to spot and fix typical errors
    • An understanding of how authentication mechanisms are implemented in Java and why they are used
    • Methods for describing cryptographic objects with ASN.1
    • How to create certificate revocation lists and use the Online Certificate Status Protocol (OCSP)
    • Real-world Web solutions using Bouncy Castle APIs

    Who this book is for

    This book is for Java developers who want to use cryptography in their applications or to understand how cryptography is being used in Java applications. Knowledge of the Java language is necessary, but you need not be familiar with any of the APIs discussed.

    Wrox Beginning guides are crafted to make learning programming languages and technologies easier than you think, providing a structured, tutorial format that will guide you through all the techniques involved. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (7)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very Helpful and Up To Date
    If you are just beginning Java this may be a little over your head.However, the concepts and sample applications are all relatively simple.The first chapter provides an excellent overview of why and how the Java crypto architecture works.

    I do not regularly keep up with crypto news so some of the tips in this book have been helpful such as not to use SHA1 anymore.It it helpful when the book goes into potential attacks on code as well in order to provide the reader with ideas of the best approach to building secure architectures.

    Prior to purchasing this book I had been trying to use several different online examples that did not go into enough depth.I would be willing to recommend this book to anyone trying to do crypto in Java.

    4-0 out of 5 stars a really useful one
    This book is the best choice if you need to initiate in the use of java crypto API (as its title claims) and it informs extensively about Bouncy Castle crypto API (which I also recommend).

    Definitely a good book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book by an expert on the subject
    By anyone's measure, cryptography is a dry and dusty subject but Hook has made it a pleasure to read this book both by trying to keep the tone light and having such a deep and thorough understanding of the topic that the discussion is effortless.While he moves through the subject matter briskly, his mastery of the area means that it's elegantly structured and easy to follow.

    All the Wrox books seem to follow a pretty rigid format and I felt sometimes that had the author been given a little more flexibility there, it could have flowed more easily.That said, the consistent organisation of the book makes it easier to use as a reference.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Book needs update to J2SE 5.0
    This book does a good introduction but the book needs an update to J2SE 5.x security updates. I like Core Security Patterns by Steel, Nagappan, Lai covers a lot more details on Java security apis than this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very hands-on
    Whether it is complete or not (of course, it is not), I would challenge anyone to point at a single alternative book covering Java cryptography at a greater level of details. The style is clear, coverage of ASN.1 is very helpful, and selection of BouncyCastle open source cryptoprovider is the most natural one. Lots more of details and code samples can be found in Bouncy Castle javadocs, but to navigate them without conceptual understanding of Java security in general and BouncyCastle implementation in particular, gained from the book like this one, would be a nightmare.

    "Inside Java 2 Platform Security: Architecture, API Design, and Implementation (2nd Edition)" would be another book to recommend, for general overview of Java Security Platform, and, also, to make sense of Java Cryptography Extension (JCE) APIs standardizing access to cryptoproviders' (such as BouncyCastle) libraries. But, of course, the two books have very little overlap. ... Read more

    19. Malicious Cryptography: Exposing Cryptovirology
    by Adam Young, Moti Yung
    Paperback: 416 Pages (2004-02-27)
    list price: US$45.00 -- used & new: US$3.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0764549758
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    Hackers have uncovered the dark side of cryptography--that device developed to defeat Trojan horses, viruses, password theft, and other cyber-crime. It’s called cryptovirology, the art of turning the very methods designed to protect your data into a means of subverting it. In this fascinating, disturbing volume, the experts who first identified cryptovirology show you exactly what you’re up against and how to fight back.

    They will take you inside the brilliant and devious mind of a hacker--as much an addict as the vacant-eyed denizen of the crackhouse--so you can feel the rush and recognize your opponent’s power. Then, they will arm you for the counterattack.

    This book reads like a futuristic fantasy, but be assured, the threat is ominously real. Vigilance is essential, now.

    • Understand the mechanics of computationally secure information stealing
    • Learn how non-zero sum Game Theory is used to develop survivable malware
    • Discover how hackers use public key cryptography to mount extortion attacks
    • Recognize and combat the danger of kleptographic attacks on smart-card devices
    • Build a strong arsenal against a cryptovirology attack
    ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (10)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A great technical book for advanced users
    Although "Malicious Cryptography" is most certainly not for beginners, you will enjoy it if you have some background in security and anti-virus research.

    Be warned, though: cyber-punk style of this book will probably resonate with some, and irk others.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!!!
    Malicious Cryptography: Exposing Cryptovirology is a brilliant book from two leading cryptographers.

    This is not for the fainthearted.

    If you are looking for an intro to crypto, look elsewhere.

    If you want cutting edge info about breaking crypto and making your crypto stronger, this is the book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars totally rads
    duncan young is truly a gift to the world of cyberphreakery.i once saw him defeat a host of cyborg lemurs with his chainsaw-arm.it was so good.this guy is from the f*ckin future.'nuff said

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
    Bypassing computer security systems has sometimes been called an art rather than a science by those who typically do not interact with computing machines at a level that would allow them to appreciate the science behind security attacks. This book does not address the strategies of how to bypass security systems, but instead concentrates on how to use cryptographic methods to corrupt the machines once access has been acquired. Clearly the authors are very excited about the developments in cryptovirology, a relatively young field, that have taken place in the last five years. Their goal though is not to train hackers to break into systems, but rather to coach the reader on how to find vulnerabilities in these systems and then repair them. The subject of cryptovirology is fascinating, especially in the mathematics that is uses, and a thorough knowledge of its power will be required for meeting the challenges of twenty-first century network computing.

    After a "motivational chapter" that it meant to shed insight on what it is like to be a hacker, this being done through a collection of short stories, the authors move on to giving a general overview of the field of cryptovirology in chapter 2. The reader gets his first dose of zero-knowledge interactive proofs (ZKIPs), which allow a prover to convince a verifier of a fact without revealing to it why the fact is true. The authors point out that viruses are vulnerable once found, since their rudimentary programming can be then studied and understood. This motivates the introduction of public key cryptography into the payload of the virus, and it is at this point that the field of cryptovirology is born.

    Chapter 3 is more of a review of modular arithmetic, entropy generators, and pseudorandom number generators and can be skipped for those readers familiar with these. The authors emphasize the need for effective random number generators and in using multiple sources for entropy generation. They also introduce the very interesting concept of a `mix network', which allows two mutually distrusting parties to communicate securely and anonymously over a network. `Onion routing' is discussed as a method for implementing asynchronous mix networks. Mix networks can be used to hide the propagation history of a worm or virus.

    In chapter 4, the authors discuss how to implement anonymous communication and how to launch a cryptotrojan attack that utilizes an anonymous communication channel. There are many applications of anonymous communication, one being E-money, and also, unfortunately, money laundering. The authors describe in fair detail how to conduct criminal operations with mix networks and anonymous money. This same technology though allows freedom of speech in geographical areas that are not sympathetic to it. Electronic voting, so controversial at the present time, is discussed as an activity that is very susceptible to the threat of stegotrojans or government violation of anonymity. Techniques for doing deniable password snatching using cryptovirology, and for countering it using zero-knowledge proofs, are also discussed.

    Chapter 5 introduces techniques for preventing the reading of counters when a virus is propagating from one machine to another. Known as `cryptocounters', the authors discuss various techniques for constructing them, such as the ElGamal and Paillier public key cryptosystems.

    Private information retrieval (PIR), which allows the secure and private theft of information, is discussed in chapter 6, wherein the authors present a few schemes for performing PIR. These schemes, unfortunately, allow the theft of information without revealing anything about the information sought and without revealing anything about what is taken. The authors also introduce a concept that they call `questionable encryptions', which are algorithms to produce valid encryptions or fake encryptions depending on the inputs. Related to question encryption, and also discussed in this chapter, are `deniable encryptions', which allow the sender to produce fake random choices that result in the true plaintext to be kept secret. Also discussed is the topic of `cryptographic computing', which allows computations with encrypted data without first having to decrypt it. The modular arithmetic used in this chapter is fascinating and well worth the read.

    Chapter 7 is by far the most interesting of the entire book, and also the most disconcerting if its strategies are ever realized. The goal of the chapter is to find out to what extent a virus can be constructed whose removal will damage the host machine. This, in the author's opinion, would be a genuine `digital disease', and they discuss various scenarios for bringing it about, which are at present not realized, but could be in the near future. The approach discussed involves game theory, and the authors show how the payload of a virus can survive even after discovery of the virus. They give a very detailed algorithm on how to attack a brokerage firm, including the assumptions that must be satisfied by such an attack. The attack is mounted by deploying a distributed cryptovirus that tries to find three suitable host machines, and the attack consists of three phases, the first involving replication leading to the infection of the three machines, the second involving preparation for the attack, and third involving playing the two-player game. The host machines, to be acceptable for launching the attack, must either be "brokerage" machines, which have sensitive information available to the virus, or "reclusive" machines, which are machines that are not subjected to much scrutiny.The goal of the virus, according to the authors, is to give the malware purchasing power, and not direct monetary gain. The virus may then evolve over time to become a portfolio manager, and may even act as a surrogate for purchasing shares on behalf of the firm or client. Other possibilities for the virus are discussed, and the authors overview the security of the attack and its utility.

    I did not read the rest of the chapters in the book, so I will omit their review.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Heaven's dark side
    For some time now we have been taught that modern cryptography offers an elegant solution to a number of problems. Communicate securely? use a VPN; identify the author of a document? use a digital signature; securely encrypt e-mail? use PKI. But what if the very power behind these solutions can itself be [misinterpreted]? If such is the case, then encryption can be a curse, a digital signature an illusion and the heralded savior an unconquerable nemesis. This is the essence of what this book is about.

    To be sure this is not easy reading. It is adult material, meaning that thinking is required. But it could not be otherwise, the material would not allow it. However the reader will be well rewarded for every morsel of math they endeavor to puzzle through. The realization of the potential dark side of modern cryptography is the first step in preparing to defend against it. This book provides that realization.

    The reader may find the first few chapters to be an entertaining fictional account of some days in the life of a hacker. Indeed, the text reads beautifully as such. But here is a chilling thought - what if the events described were real? ... Read more

    20. Handbook of Applied Cryptography
    by Alfred J. Menezes
     Hardcover: Pages (1997)
    -- used & new: US$89.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B003Q8LVSS
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Customer Reviews (16)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Advanced Crypto for the college mind.
    This very detailed work is not for the light hearted. It's an in depth look at the mathmatics behind cryptography. If you're looking for a book to help you program then look for Applied Cryptography by Bruce the crypto king instead. If you're looking for something to help you learn cryptoanalysis and how to break codes then this is the first step.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic traditional reference
    The Chapter 14 - Efficient Implementation - shows several multiple precision algorithms. They are very easy to understand and implement under any microprocessor. It is a very good complement to the book set written by Donald Knuth (The Art of Computer Programming, Volumes 1-3 Boxed Set), another fantastic traditional reference.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A very detailed book, but not for everyone.
    This is a fairly strong book on crypto, with heavy detail on the math involved.The upside is that the second chapter is devoted to most of the important mathematical theory you'll need to understand for the rest of the book.The downside?That chapter tries to cover just about the same breadth of information as a semester long course in Number Theory.

    If you don't have a ton of mathematical background and are scared of having to take a crash course in number theory, or are looking for a higher level view of things, I'd suggest something more along the lines of Bruce Schneier's 'Applied Cryptography' (ASIN 0471117099). If you have some mathematical background, but want to get into things in detail, this is probably for you.

    If you're not sure whether you'll like the book, you should definitely take a look at it. While Amazon currently doesn't have sample pages, if you do a Web Search on "Handbook of Applied Cryptography", you can find Sample Chapters hosted online to give you a good feel for the book's style.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Complete and satisfying
    This book is a deep detailed analysis of
    modern cryptography.It is light on
    The mathematical background information
    and explanations are complete and clear.
    It is very satisfying to be able to read
    the prose and implement the ideas in
    a computer program with ease.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very depthful yet readable
    I read 4 other books before picking this one. It is the most detailed and readable book. Covers all aspect of the Cryptography. Worth the money. ... Read more

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