Detailed information about selected course/program
EU code
6.2 - Electrical Engineering
3 - PhD
University of Leuven, Belgium
Electrical Engineering Department, Computer Security and Industrial Cryptography Group
PhD position: Standard cell compatible design methods for security
Language requirements
Good knowledge of English.
Academic requirements
The candidate should hold a master degree in electronics, electrical or computer engineering, or computer science. A basic knowledge of cryptography and security is a plus.
Max available positions
The strength of cryptographic algorithms, such as the secret key AES or the Elliptic Curve Public Key algorithm is founded on difficult mathematical problems. The result is that brute-force attacks become computationally infeasible. At the same time, cryptographic algorithms are now being executed on many portable and wireless devices, including smart phones, smart-cards, medical devices and more. The effect is that attackers no longer aim at the mathematical weaknesses of the algorithms but they attack the algorithm while it is running on an embedded device. Indeed, the power consumption and/or the electromagnetic radiation are a function of the operations being performed and the data being processed. If this is data which is related to the key or plain text, then the variations in power consumption or electromagnetic radiation will disclose the key (or part of the key). Similarly, fault attacks, e.g. triggered by power or clock glitches, aim at introducing faults during the calculations. Based on the result
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36 months between Jul 15 2014 and Jul 14 2017
Contact person
Prof. Ingrid Verbauwhede (
Additional information
The scholarship is provided for 36 months, which can be extended by the department up to a total maximum of 48 months, the maximum time to finish the PhD studies. The Computer Security and Industrial Cryptography group (COSIC) is an international research group, which currently has over 40 researchers from 20 different nationalities. The research work of COSIC covers a broad span that varies from mathematical foundations over algorithms and protocols towards efficient and secure implementations in hardware and software. This research of COSIC has led to important successes in the area of cryptanalysis and design; notable successes are the selection of the Rijndael algorithm as the US Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), efficient implementations of cryptographic algorithms in HW and SW and the design of circuitstyles resistant to side-channel attacks. COSIC also has an electronics security lab to perform attacks and evaluate the strength of countermeasures.