Graduation “sub auspiciis” for Daniel Kales

On March 15th, together with five other TU Graz/Uni Graz graduates, Daniel Kales received his doctorate under the auspices of the Austrian President – the highest honour in Austrian education. Uni Graz principal Peter Riedler and TU Graz principal Horst Bischof presented the six graduates with this honour on behalf of the President of Austria, Alexander Van der Bellen, who presented the graduates with their ring of honour on March 18th in Vienna.

We at IAIK want to congratulate Daniel and wish him all the best in his future endeavours!

Daniel’s doctoral thesis, “Improving Modern Cryptographic Protocols using Domain-Specific Symmetric Primitives”, was written under the supervision of Univ.-Prof. Christian Rechberger.


In this thesis, I explored several aspects of the security and efficiency of protocols using domain-specific symmetric primitives. One of the main explored applications is the long-term security of cryptographic primitives, where the security of many existing digital signature schemes is being threatened by quantum attacks. We investigated the security and efficiency of post-quantum signature schemes built solely using symmetric-key primitives. We show how to improve the performance of Picnic, one such scheme, further, investigate the security of alternative post-quantum signature designs and propose two new post-quantum signature designs that perform better than Picnic. Finally, we show that by combining generic multiparty computation with block ciphers specifically designed for this use case, we can create a protocol that is competitive with custom private set intersection protocols in the context of mobile contact discovery.