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IBM scientist Jan Camenisch receives prestigious research award

ACM SIGSAC Outstanding Innovation Award for seminal research in privacy-enhancing cryptography

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Chicago, IL, 7 October 2010—At the 17th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, held in Chicago, IL, ACM's Special Interest Group on Security, Audit and Control (SIGSAC) has awarded its top honors to Jan Camenisch of IBM Research - Zurich and to Bhavani Thuraisingham of the University of Texas at Dallas for their contributions to the computer and communications security community.

Jan Camenisch receives the SIGSAC Outstanding Innovation Award for outstanding theoretical work on privacy-enhancing cryptographic protocols and his leadership in their practical realization. The award recognizes outstanding and innovative technical contributions to the field of computer and communication security that have had lasting impact in furthering or understanding the theory or development of secure systems.

Bhavani Thuraisingham receives the SIGSAC Outstanding Contributions Award for her seminal research contributions and leadership in data and applications security over the past 25 years.

Jan Camenisch has conducted research into the problem of preserving privacy in an era of distributed systems, where users commonly reveal more personal data than is necessary to be granted access to online resources. To achieve a balance between the protection of company resources and the privacy of their users, he pioneered cryptography tools that can help individuals regain control of their data and save their privacy. He also investigated the extent to which these tools can be used in practice by using innovative authorization language that allows the expression of access control requirements, and serves as a central piece in an open access control setting.

A graduate of ETH (the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology) Zurich, Camenisch received a Diploma in Electrical Engineering Science and a Ph.D. degree in Computer Science. In 1998, he was Research Assistant Professor in Computer Science at the University of Aarhus, Denmark, and in 1999, he joined IBM Research - Zurich as a Research Staff Member and project leader. He is also the technical leader of the European Union-funded project PrimeLife, which aims to make privacy enhancing identities a reality. Among his research interests are cryptographic protocols, particularly those supporting privacy and anonymity, and practical secure distributed computation. He has published more than 70 refereed papers.

About ACM

ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, is the world’s largest educational and scientific computing society, uniting computing educators, researchers and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources and address the field’s challenges. ACM strengthens the computing profession’s collective voice through strong leadership, promotion of the highest standards, and recognition of technical excellence. ACM supports the professional growth of its members by providing opportunities for life-long learning, career development, and professional networking.


SIGSAC, the ACM Special Interest Group on Security, Audit and Control sponsors research conferences and workshops on security technologies, systems, applications, and policies. Technology topics include access control, assurance, authentication, cryptography, intrusion detection, penetration techniques, risk analysis, and secure protocols. These technologies apply to operating systems, database systems, networks and distributed systems, and middleware. Applications for these systems are critical to the operation of information and workflow systems, electronic cash and commerce, copyright and intellectual property protection, telecommunications systems, and healthcare. These applications provide confidentiality, integrity, availability, privacy, and survivability policies that benefit science, business and society.

Press contact

Nicole Strachowski
Media Relations
IBM Research - Zurich
Tel +41 44 724 84 45

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