NTRUEncrypt - History


The NTRUEncrypt Public Key Cryptosystem is a relatively new cryptosystem. The first version of the system, which was simply called NTRU, was developed around 1996 by three mathematicians (J. Hoffstein, J.Pipher and J.H. Silverman). In 1996 these mathematicians together with D. Lieman founded the NTRU Cryptosystems, Inc. and were given a patent on the cryptosystem.

At first the cryptosystem sometimes failed to decrypt a message back to the original message even though the message was encrypted correctly. Even though the system sometimes failed to decrypt, the developers considered it a public key cryptosystem and thereby based their security claims on the assumption that this system was a public key cryptosystem.

During the last ten years people have been working on improving the cryptosystem. Since the first presentation of the cryptosystem, some changes were made to improve both the performance of the system and its security. Most performance improvements were focussed on speeding up the process, rather than fixing the problem of incorrect decryption. Up till 2005 literature can be found that describes the decryption failures of the NTRUEncrypt. As for security, since the first version of the NTRUEncrypt, new parameters have been introduced that seem secure for all currently known attacks and reasonable increase in computation power. Now the system is fully accepted to IEEE P1363 standards under the specifications for lattice-based public-key cryptography (IEEE P1363.1). Because of the speed of the NTRUEncrypt Public Key Cryptosystem (see http://bench.cr.yp.to for benchmarking results) and its low memory use (see below), it can be used in applications such as mobile devices and Smart-cards. In April 2011, NTRUEncrypt was accepted as a X9.98 Standard, for use in the financial services industry.

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