Private: Advisors

Protecting the world’s most sensitive data

Hovav Shacham

Dr. Hovav Shacham joined UC San Diego’s Department of Computer Science and Engineering in Fall 2007.

Dr. Shacham’s research interests are in applied cryptography, systems security, and tech policy. Dr. Shacham is the inventor of return-oriented programming, an attack against security measures (such as Windows Vista’s DEP) that distinguish “good code” from “bad code.”

He is also one of the pioneers in using pairings-computable bilinear maps over certain elliptic curves-to construct cryptographic systems. His thesis, “New Paradigms in Signature Schemes,” was runner up for the Stanford Department of Computer Science’s Arthur L. Samuel Thesis Award, and was nominated for the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Competition. At the Weizmann, Shacham taught a survey on pairings in cryptography, one of the first such courses to be offered.

In 2007, Shacham participated in California Secretary of State Debra Bowen’s “Top-to-Bottom” Review of the voting machines certified for use in California. He was a member of the team reviewing Hart InterCivic source code; the report he co-authored was cited by the Secretary in her decision to withdraw approval from Hart voting machines.

Shacham received his Ph.D. in computer science in 2005 from Stanford University, where he had also earned, in 2000, an A.B. in English. His Ph.D. advisor was Dan Boneh. In 2006 and 2007, he was a Koshland Scholars Program postdoctoral fellow at the Weizmann Institute of Science, hosted by Moni Naor.