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E-Learning Program for Cryptology
– University of Darmstadt
– University of Duisburg-Essen
– University of Kassel / Applied Information Security
– University of Siegen
CT 1.4.40 (September 21, 2017)
CT 2.0 (August 20, 2014)
CT 2.1 Beta 1 (May 2017)
JCT 1.0 RC8 (October 2016)
|Operating system||CT1 and CT2: Microsoft Windows,
JCT: Win, Linux and MacOS
|Type||Cryptology, Encryption, Privacy, E-Learning|
|License||Apache Licence 2.0|
CrypTool is an open source project. The main result is the free e-learning software CrypTool illustrating cryptographic and cryptanalytic concepts. According to "Hakin9" CrypTool is worldwide the most widespread e-learning software in the field of cryptology.
CrypTool implements more than 400 algorithms. Users can adjust these with own parameters. The graphical interface, online documentation, analytic tools and algorithms of CrypTool introduce users to the field of cryptography. CrypTool contains most classical ciphers, as well as modern symmetric and asymmetric cryptography including RSA, ECC, digital signatures, hybrid encryption, homomorphic encryption, and Diffie–Hellman key exchange. Methods from the area of quantum cryptography (like BB84 key exchange protocol) and the area of post-quantum cryptography (like McEliece, WOTS, Merkle-Signature-Scheme, XMSS) are implemented. Methods (for instance Huffman code, AES, Keccak, MSS) are visualized.
The development of CrypTool started in 1998. Originally developed by German companies and universities, it is an open source project since 2001. More than sixty people worldwide contribute regularly to the project. Contributions as software plugins came from universities or schools in the following towns: Belgrad, Berlin, Bochum, Brisbane, Darmstadt, Dubai, Duisburg-Essen, Eindhoven, Hagenberg, Jena, Kassel, Klagenfurth, Koblenz, London, Madrid, Mannheim, San Jose, Siegen, Utrecht, Warsaw.
Currently 4 versions of CrypTool are maintained and developed. The CrypTool 1 (CT1) software is available in 6 languages (English, German, Polish, Spanish, Serbian, and French). All others, CrypTool 2 (CT2), JCrypTool (JCT) and CrypTool-Online (CTO), are available only in English and German.
The goal of the CrypTool project is to make users aware of how cryptography can help against network security threats and to explain the underlying concepts of cryptology.
In 2007, development began on two additional projects, both based on a pure-plugin architecture, to serve as successors to the original CrypTool program. Both successors regularly publish new stable betas:
CrypTool has received several international awards as an educational program, such as the TeleTrusT Special Award 2004, EISA 2004, IT Security Award NRW 2004, and Selected Landmark in the Land of Ideas 2008 award.
Worldwide, the CrypTool packages are downloaded more than 10,000 times per month from the CrypTool website. Just over 50% of the downloads are for the English version.
In 2010, the international cipher contest MTC3 started as part of the CrypTool project. The contest currently offers more than 200 challenges derived from old and modern ciphers and designed by more than 30 different authors from different countries. All challenges are presented in PDF templates in English and German. The challenges are clustered in four levels of difficulty, which range from simple riddles solvable with paper-and-pencil to mathematical challenges from modern cryptanalysis for researchers and experts. Additionally, a moderated forum, user statistics, and a hall-of-fame are available. Currently, more than 8000 registered users are engaged in solving these challenges.