AWS Cryptography and Privacy Call for Proposals - Fall 2023
Setting the standard for cryptography and privacy at Amazon.
About this CFP
Amazon’s mission is to provide customers with the world’s most secure computing environment, and the best computing services for privacy. We are the stewards of cryptography and privacy engineering within Amazon, and we set the standard for the use and implementation of such technologies across the organization. Cryptography and Privacy builds and maintains customer trust by protecting users’ applications and data in use, in transit, and at rest. We are thought leaders in privacy engineering and build systems that default to privacy by design for customers’ data.
We seek proposals in these areas:
Primitives and protocols
- Specification of cryptographic primitives, and formal proof of their security properties.
- Practical optimizations for cryptographic transport protocols.
- Cryptanalysis of standard algorithms in mild misuse scenarios.
- Wide-block ciphers and new efficient symmetric encryption modes based on existing primitives.
- MPC-friendly symmetric primitives.
- Post-quantum oblivious pseudo random functions.
- Quantum-safe threshold signatures.
Open source and verification
- Formal, static verification of open source cryptographic software, including verification of freedom from side-channel attacks.
- Verified optimization of cryptographic code, particularly for 64-bit x86 and ARMv8 micro-architectures.
- A production-ready and open-source MPC library.
- Verification of randomized algorithms.
- Provable privacy.
Theory and novel applications
- Fundamental research of the feasibility of a cryptographically-relevant quantum computer.
- Watermarking and provenance mechanisms for AI-generated content.
- Improved practical FHE bootstrapping algorithms for general-purpose cloud-delegated computation.
Submission period: September 21, 2023 - November 13, 2023 (11:59PM Pacific Time)
Decision letters will be sent out March 2024
Selected Principal Investigators (PIs) may receive the following:
- Unrestricted funds, no more than $80,000 USD on average
- AWS Promotional Credits, no more than $20,000 USD on average
- Training resources, including AWS tutorials and hands-on sessions with Amazon scientists and engineers
Amazon Research Awards (ARA) are structured as one-year unrestricted gifts. The budget should include a list of expected costs specified in USD, and should not include administrative overhead costs. The final award amount will be determined by the awards panel.
Please refer to the ARA Program rules on the Rules and Eligibility page.
Proposals should be prepared according to the proposal template. Proposals should answer the following questions:
- Does your work target theory or application? Please provide information about your specific domain.
- What are the current applications of your work?
- What are potential applications of your work to Amazon?
- What assumptions are made by your work? What are issues that may invalidate the trustworthiness of results?
- If your work involves the development and maintenance of a tool:
- Under what license is your tool released?
- What training and tutorial material is available?
- Is your tool actively maintained (commits within last 3 months)? How many active contributors does your project have?
ARA funding decisions will be based on potential impact to Amazon and the development of the scientific community in cryptography and privacy. Amazon's commitment to developing the scientific community includes increasing the number of university researchers engage in cryptography and privacy research. We are also committed to increasing the diversity of the cryptography and privacy community at all levels. We particularly welcome proposals that further these goals.
Expectations from recipients
To the extent deemed reasonable, Award recipients should acknowledge the support from ARA. Award recipients will inform ARA of publications, presentations, code and data releases, blogs/social media posts, and other speaking engagements referencing the results of the supported research or the Award. Award recipients are expected to provide updates and feedback to ARA via surveys or reports on the status of their research. Award recipients will have an opportunity to work with ARA on an informational statement about the awarded project that may be used to generate visibility for their institutions and ARA.