Bruce Schneier

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Bruce Schneier 2013
Bruce Schneier 2007

Bruce Schneier (born January 15, 1963 in New York ) is an American expert on cryptography and computer security , author of various books on computer security and co-founder of the computer security company Counterpane Internet Security .

Schneier is a Fellow of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School and the Open Technology Institute of the New America Foundation . He was brought into the editorial team of the British newspaper The Guardian , which uncovered the surveillance and espionage affair in 2013 based on the revelations made by Edward Snowden . He is a board member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation .


After earning a bachelor's degree in physics from Rochester University , Schneier studied at American University from 1985 , where he received a master's degree in computer science . During his studies he started working for the Ministry of Defense . He later worked at Bell Labs before founding Counterpane Internet Security in August 1999 . This company was acquired by BT Managed Security Solutions, Mountain View in October 2006 . Today Schneier lives in Minneapolis with his wife, Karen Cooper .

He holds the job title Security Futurologist at British Telecom .


His best-known work is Applied Cryptography , a fundamental work on entering cryptography . There are also a number of publications on computer security and cryptography. The newsletter Crypto-Gram about computers and other security issues is sent to subscribers on a monthly basis. Current problems are addressed here as well as in his blog .

Schneier continues to work intensively on the development of encryption algorithms. In the appendix of the book Cryptonomicon ( Neal Stephenson ) he presents the encryption algorithm Solitaire , which works with an ordinary card game. He co-developed the Blowfish and Twofish encryption algorithms as well as the Yarrow and Fortuna pseudo-random generators . Twofish was shortlisted for the AES competition. As part of the SHA-3 competition, he was one of the developers of the Skein hash algorithm .

As a result, Schneier intensified his research on more general issues of computer security, on dealing with risks and on socio-political problems associated with cryptography and computer security. Today he also deals intensively with psychological questions of information security , in particular with security awareness and the attitude of users and specialists.

In November 2007 he pointed out in the technology magazine Wired that, in his opinion , a backdoor might be built into one of the four cryptographic random number generators published by NIST in March 2007 , namely the Dual Elliptic Curve Deterministic Random Bit Generator ( Dual EC DRBG ) . It is worth mentioning that the selection of this generator for the standardization was mainly made at the insistence of the NSA . This random number generator is also included with Service Pack 1 in Windows Vista . The suspicion of a backdoor was confirmed in 2013 by documents revealed by Edward Snowden .



"If you think technology can solve your security problems, then you don't understand the problems and you don't understand the technology."

"If you think technology can solve your security problems, then you don't understand the problems and you don't understand the technology."

- Bruce Schneier, foreword to Secrets and Lies , 2000

"Amateurs hack systems, professionals hack people."

"Amateurs crack systems, professionals crack people."

- Bruce Schneier, Dec 2000

Web links

Commons : Bruce Schneier  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Recommendation for Random Number Generation Using Deterministic Random Bit Generators (Revised) ( Memento from January 3, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 534 kB) NIST Special Publication 800-90
  2. Did NSA Put a Secret Backdoor in New Encryption Standard?
  3. Encryption standard suspected of being backdoor . heise online
  4. Controversial random number generator in Vista Service Pack 1 . heise online
  5. Bruce Schneier Blog
  6. NSA paid $ 10 million for crypto backdoor . heise online