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Professor Elisabeth Oswald

Professor Elisabeth Oswald

Professor Elisabeth Oswald

Professor in Applied Cryptography

Office 3.47
Merchant Venturers Building,
Woodland Road, Clifton BS8 1UB
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 954 5634


Elisabeth's main research interest is in applied cryptography. She focuses thereby on implementation aspects: i.e. what problems arise when (theoretical) cryptography is put into practice by implementing it on different devices which all inevitably leak some form of information. She has spent several years looking into practical methods of dealing with information leakage via the power consumption (and electro-magnetic emanations), and has recently branched out towards dealing with web based side channels.

Besides her work on concrete and practical attacks and countermeasures, she is investigating longer term and more theoretically sound countermeasures tapping into the area of leakage resilient cryptography. Connected to leakage resilient cryptography is her most recent work on smart brute-force key search as well as highly accurate key ranking algorithms.  


Elisabeth lectures on a number of units that deal with Cryptography and Information Security.  She has held the post of Postgraduate Research Director for MVSE until 2016. Currenlty she acts as Senior Tutor for the Computer Science department, where she is also Deputy Head.


Expert in the field of power analysis attacks on cryptographic devices such as smart cards. Generally interested in problems of applied cryptography and information security, some contribution to the analysis of hash functions, and to efficient implementations of cryptographic algorithms.

  • cryptography
  • security
  • side channel attacks
  • power analysis attacks
  • smart cards


  • side channel analysis
  • leakage resilient cryptography


Elisabeth joined University of Bristol as a lecturer in October 2006 after spending many years studying and working at Graz University of Technology. As part of the Cryptography Group in Bristol she contributes to national and international research and related activities, e.g. she was program co-chair of CHES in 2008, FDTC in 2009, co-chaired Eurocrypt in 2014 and 2015, and co-chaired COSADE 2016. She currently holds the position of Professorin in Applied Cryptography. 

In 2010 she was awarded a high profile EPSRC Leadership Fellowship and has since then concentrated her effort on research. In 2016 she was awarded an ERC Consolidator grant for researching sound and early leakage assessment method specifically targeted to embedded software. 

Her main interest is in side channel 'stuff', may this be in the form of power analysis, web applications, or related to leakage resilient cryptography. 




Elisabeth lectures/d on a number of units that deal with Cryptography and Information Security.  


  • side channel analysis
  • leakage resilient cryptography



Department of Computer Science

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Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system


Professor Oswald currently teaches 3 courses:

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