NSU Students Win Cryptography International Olympiad NSUCRYPTO

NSU students were prize winners and finalists in the international student's Olympiad in cryptography NSUCRYPTO, which was held by the Novosibirsk State University in cooperation with the University of Leuven (Belgium).


The goal of NSUCRYPTO is to attract young researchers to solving mathematical problems associated with modern cryptography, including unsolved problems. Participation in the Olympiad, which consisted of two independent Internet rounds, was open to anyone.

This year, representatives fr om 23 countries took part in the final round of the Olympiad.

Categories for the online competitions, which included individual and team components, were «Schoolchildren», «University Students» and «Professionals».

Participants fr om NSU won prizes in the «University Student» individual and team competitions. In the «Schoolchildren» category, bronze went to pupils at the NSU Specialized Educational Center. Roman Lebedev, a first year Master's Program student at the NSU IT Department, took the gold in both the personal and team championships.

Lebedev commented on the competition:

This time, at least in the individual competition, I was extremely lucky with the problems. The other participant who solved the RSA task (this is an encryption algorithm) was in the «Professionals» category. I was familiar with this algorithm since I also participated with a team in the CTF information security competition. The problems were more complicated in the team competition wh ere we had to deal not only with cryptography, but also with mathematics, so we were not as successful dealing with all of the problems.

Lebedev continued to share his impressions:

The most interesting thing I personally had to deal with was the problem wh ere we had to apply the LLL algorithm, but many other problems were also very interesting. There was even a problem that suggested we come up with a proof of work algorithm, which is becoming very relevant with the increasing popularity of crypto currency.

Evgenia Ishkova, «Professional» participant from the Southern Federal University, talked about her experience:

We are taking part in the Olympiad for the third year in a row. Even though we have experience in cryptography, we were not able to solve all the problems in the allotted time. To solve the Olympiad problems, you need not only knowledge of mathematics and cryptography, but also programming skills and the ability to look at the problem being solved from other points of view. Sometimes you hammer away at the solution to a problem for many hours, sometimes it you think it is impossible to find a solution. But when you find the solution, it is so obvious that you experience an incomparable sense of excitement. I take my hat off to the people who come up with these problems that expand the horizon and make you think 24 hours a day. Many thanks to the organizers of the Olympiad.

Organizers of the Olympiad note that the geography for Olympiad participants is growing every year.

Anastasia Gorodilova, Olympiad Program Committee member, Senior Teacher and researcher at the Algorithm Laboratory at the NSU Department of Mathematics and Mechanics thanks participants and made an announcement:

There are people who have participated since the very first year of the Olympiad just changing categories so that Schoolchildren became Students, Students became - Professionals. We thank everyone for their active participation, creative solutions and interest in cryptography mathematical problems! Now you are invited to next year’s Olympiad - NSUCRYPTO-2018 that will take place from October 14 to 22, 2018.

The awards ceremony for Novosibirsk winners took place on December 23 at 16:30 in room 315 in the Novosibirsk State University main building.

A full list of winners can be found on the official Olympiad website олимпиады.

The NSUCRYPTO Olympiad is supported by 5-100 Project at NSU, the NSU Regional Science and Education Mathematical Center and Doctor Web (the Russian developer of Dr.Web anti-virus software).