Robert Morris (cryptographer)

Robert Morris (cryptographer)

Robert "Bob" H. Morris is an American cryptographer. He received a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University in 1957 and a master's degree in mathematics from Harvard in 1958. He was a researcher at Bell Labs from 1960 until 1986, when he began work at the National Security Agency (NSA). He served as chief scientist of the NSA's National Computer Security Center, where he was involved in the production of the Rainbow Series of computer security standards, and retired from the NSA in 1994. [ [ The data encryption standard—Retrospective and prospects] , R. Morris, "IEEE Communications" 16, #6 (November 1978), pp. 11–14.] [ [ IEEE "Electronic CIPHER" 9 (1995-09-18)] ] [ [ AUUG 98 Conference Information and Registration Form] , accessed on line November 29, 2007.] He is the father of Robert Tappan Morris, who wrote the (in)famous 1988 Morris Worm.

Morris contributed to early versions of UNIX. He wrote the math library, the program crypt, and the password encryption scheme used for user authentication. [ [ Dabbling in the Cryptographic World--A Story] , Dennis Ritchie, May 5, 2000, Bell Labs. Accessed on line November 29, 2007.] The encryption scheme was based on using a trapdoor function (now called a key derivation function) to compute hashes of user passwords which were stored in the file /etc/passwd; analogous techniques, relying on different functions, are still in use today. [ [ "Password Security: A Case History" by Robert Morris and Ken Thompson (1978)] ]

There is a description of Morris in Clifford Stoll's book "The Cuckoo's Egg".Many readers of Stoll's book remember Morris for giving Stoll a challenging mathematical puzzle (originally due to John H. Conway) in the course of their discussions on computer security: "What is the next number in the sequence 1 11 21 1211 111221?" (known as the look-and-say sequence). Stoll chose not to include the answer to this puzzle in "The Cuckoo's Egg", to the frustration of many readers. [ [ FAQ about Morris Number Sequence ] ]


* Never underestimate the attention, risk, money and time that an opponent will put into reading traffic.
* Rule 1 of cryptanalysis: check for plaintext. [ [ "Notes on Crypto '95 invited talks by R. Morris and A. Shamir" by Jim Gillogly and Paul Syverson] ]
* The three golden rules to ensure computer security are: do not own a computer; do not power it on; and do not use it. [p. 1, "Inside Java 2 Platform Security: Architecture, API Design, and Implementation", Li Gong, Gary Ellison, and Mary Dageforde, Boston: Addison-Wesley, 2003, 2nd ed., ISBN 0201787911.]

elected publications

* (with Fred T. Grampp) UNIX Operating System Security, "AT&T Bell Laboratories Technical Journal", 63, part 2, #8 (October 1984), pp. 1649–1672.

External links

* Dennis Ritchie's "Dabbling in the Cryptographic World" tells the story of cryptographic research he performed with Morris, and why that research was never published.


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Robert Morris — Robert or Bob Morris is the name of: Robert Hunter Morris (1700–1764), Lieutenant Governor of Colonial Pennsylvania from 1754 to 1756 Robert Morris (writer) (1703–1754), English writer on architecture Robert Morris (financier) (1734–1806),… …   Wikipedia

  • Robert H. Morris — may refer to: * Robert Morris (cryptographer) * Robert Hunter Morris (1700 ndash; 1764), a lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania …   Wikipedia

  • Robert Hanssen — For those of a similar name, see Robert Hanson (disambiguation). Robert Hanssen Robert Hanssen Born April 18, 1944 (1944 04 18) (age 67) Chicago, Illinois …   Wikipedia

  • Хеширование — Хеш функция, отображающая множество имён в множество натуральныых чисел Хеширование (иногда «хэширование», англ. hashing)  преобразование по детерменированному алгоритму входного массива данных прои …   Википедия

  • Look-and-say sequence — The lines show the growth of the numbers of digits in the look and say sequences with starting points 23 (red), 1 (blue), 13 (violet), 312 (green). These lines (when represented in a logarithmic scale) tend to straight lines whose slopes coincide …   Wikipedia

  • John Markoff — Infobox journalist name = John Markoff caption = John Markoff birthname = John Markoff birth date = birth date and age|1949|10|24 birth place = Oakland, California age = death date = death place = education = occupation = Journalist alias =… …   Wikipedia

  • Deaths in June 2011 — Contents 1 June 2011 1.1 30 1.2 29 1.3 28 …   Wikipedia

  • List of Belgians — This is a list of notable Belgian people who either: *are or were Belgian citizens during at least one period of their life, *were born in Belgium or in the provinces of present day Belgium, but who were not or are not Belgian citizens (either… …   Wikipedia

  • List of Old Carthusians — Old Carthusians are former pupils of Charterhouse School.Born in 17th century*Joseph Henshaw (1603 ndash;1679), Bishop of Peterborough, 1663 ndash;1679 *Roger Williams (c.1603 ndash;1683), religious dissenter and co founder of Rhode Island… …   Wikipedia

  • Claude Shannon — Claude Elwood Shannon (1916 2001) Born April …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”