The Technology Innovation Institute’s Cryptography Research Center launched the TII McEliece Challenges to evaluate the concrete hardness of the McEliece cryptosystem (McEliece). This Year-long initiative invites participants to assess concrete hardness of McEliece’s key encapsulation mechanism through solving multiple challenges
As part of the challenges, participants will be able to validate the security of the cryptosystem's secret key and its ciphertexts. In doing so, they can identify possible weaknesses and confirm the strengths of the cryptosystem.
Conducted over the course of a year, the challenges will publish multiple McEliece-based cryptanalysis problems with increasing levels of difficulty that explore three different tracks - Theoretical Key Recovery Algorithms, Practical Key Recovery, and Message Recovery. The Practical Key Recovery track provides challenges in the range 41--255 bit security levels. The Message recover Track offers instances in the range 34--90 bit security levels.
The McEliece cryptosystem is a public key encryption scheme that utilizes both a public key and a private key to encrypt and decrypt messages.
As a result, McEliece has become a leading choice among code-based cryptographic systems for standardization by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). CRC’s challenges support this effort and will further strengthen the understanding of the cryptosystem among the community.
After the submission deadline, the following four prizes will be awarded to the best judged submission in the theoretical track and to the competitor/team that has solved the most difficult instance in each of the other tracks.
$10,000 :70 — 255
(original instance levels for track 1B)
$7,500 :63 — 69
$5,000 :57 — 60
$2,500 :51 — 55
$1,000 :41 — 50
$15,000 :70 — 74
(original instance levels for track 2A)
$5,000 :65 — 69
$2,000 :60 — 64
$1,000 :55 — 59
$500 :50 — 54
$200 : 45 — 49
$100 : 34 — 44
$40,000 :80 — 90
(original instance levels for track 2B)
$25,000 :75 — 79
*Evaluation period includes scoring/ranking, soliciting write-ups and Q&A from top solvers,and final winner approvals for announcement.
May 9, 2023
May 23, 2023
Submission Form Opens
May 8, 2024
at 5:00pm ET
Registration and Submission deadline
June 4, 2024
Judging May 8
June 11, 2024