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Cryptography set to benefit trade, banking, governance

By Our Staff Reporter

CHENNAI, DEC. 19. Cryptography, the science of providing secure communication over insecure channels, is bound to find more applications with the growth of electronic trading, banking and governance.

For long, limited to use in matters concerning defence and internal security of nations, it is poised to impact various aspects of industry and commerce. That, in turn, called for evolving standards for application of the science, according to M.S. Vijayaraghavan, Executive Director, Society for Electronics Transactions and Security (SETS).

Briefing presspersons here today on INDOCRYPT '04, a three-day international conference on cryptology that got under way at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences (IMSc) in Chennai on Monday, he said the cryptology systems used in strategic applications in the country were strong.

But cryptology had not made much headway in commercial applications in the country, which was an indicator of its potential to be nurtured as a specialised sector.

While the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Centre, R. Chidambaram, was scheduled to inaugurate the conference, the President, A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, will address it through a video-conferencing facility.

The Director of IMSc, R. Balasubramanian, said experts from several countries, including Korea, France, Australia, Belgium, Germany and Canada, have confirmed their participation in the conference, which the institute was co-hosting with SETS.

Anne Canteaut, Research Officer with the National Research Institute in Computer Science and Control, France, who would co-chair with Kapali Viswanathan of SETS, said out of 147 technical papers received, the organisers had selected 30, including five from India, to be presented at the meet.

Cryptology, she added, was a versatile area requiring research for its use in new applications. One of the oldest science, cryptology was the study of both cryptography and cryptanalysis, which was the art of breaking into cryptographic communications and understanding their contents.

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