Sunday, June 06, 2004

A Tale of Two Sieves

An elementary introduction by Carl Pomerance to the quadratic and number-field sieve methods for integer factorization; these two techniques constitute the fastest currently known brute-force attacks on traditional public-key cryptography, the number-field sieve being the faster of the two. These two sieves are ineffective in attacking elliptic curve cryptosystems, however, as they both rely on the index-calculus method.

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