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Information Security

Information Security

Our world-renowned Information Security Group (ISG) is available for school talks, which can be adapted for any age range or target audience.

For more information email Dr Lorenzo Cavallaro

Examples of the types of presentations delivered

Professor Keith Martin - Cryptography and the Da Vinci Code: This talk provided an introduction to cryptography, a science which has played an important historic role and now underpins the security of information systems, including the internet. We demonstrated some of the security problems with sending information over the internet and discussed how cryptography can be used to address these. Attendees had the chance to solve some simple cryptographic puzzles and learn a little bit about how cryptography works. Professor Martin also discussed if any real cryptography is used in Dan Brown's book 'The Da Vinci Code'

Professor Kenny Paterson - From Fish to Phishing: Cryptography is a beautiful and ancient subject, and today is a thriving academic discipline at the intersection of mathematics and computer science. Cryptography plays an important role in securing many facets of everyday life, including, for example, our mobile phone calls, our credit card payments and (soon) our electronic health records. In this talk, Professor Paterson discussed some of the real-world problems that arise when cryptography is put into use. The talk began with the discussion of Fish, an important cipher from World War II, with an explanation of how it was broken at Bletchley Park using a combination of luck, ingenuity and hard work. He ended with Phishing - a modern phenomenon in which fraudsters trick victims into revealing sensitive personal information such as credit card details. He extracted from these and other examples, what cryptography can (and cannot) do for us.

Professor Fred Piper - How to Keep a Secret: An Introduction to Cryptography: Many people now encrypt their email messages to prevent other people from reading them. Financial institutions use cryptography to protect transactions conducted over open networks. How does it work? In this lecture we looked at some of the basic principles and saw how cryptography has developed.

Every Summer, we host an event at Royal Holloway for students taking A Level Mathematics and their teachers. Exploring Mathematics (EXPOMAT) is aimed primarily at school children and consists of a varied programme of talks, quizzes, campus tours and mind games, all led by academics. The ISG members take part by running activities and talks introducing Information Security topics from Cryptography to Smart Cards.

Schools, as well as families and the local community, are invited to join us for the Royal Holloway Science Festival, which usually takes place annually in Spring of each year. As part of the festival, we host hands-on activities, demonstrations, talks, live experiments and more, to showcase the research that is conducted by the Science Faculty. Royal Holloway Science Festival has evolved from our hugely popular annual Science Open Day, which has run for more than 20 years and attracts thousands of visitors.

The Information Security Group at Royal Holloway hosts a three-day residential course on cybersecurity for Year 9 students annually in Spring of each year. The course, which runs through the Smallpeice Trust, explores some of the threats to cyberspace and the techniques we can use to provide cybersecurity. For further details, please visit the Smallpeice webpage

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