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Cryptologic Hall of Honor

The Cryptologic Hall of Honor was created in 1999 to pay special tribute to the pioneers and heroes who rendered distinguished service to American cryptology.

The standards are high for induction into this great hall. The individuals honored were innovators over their entire careers or made major contributions to the structure and processes of American cryptology. The men and women who have been inducted to the Cryptologic Hall of Honor are all greats in the once silent world of cryptology.

In the early days of America's cryptologic effort, many of the "giants" did both Signals Intelligence and Information Assurance. They made important contributions to both offensive and defensive cryptology. As such, they were among the first inducted into the Cryptologic Hall of Honor. 

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Lester K. Myers, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Lester K. Myers
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Lester K. Myers, former NSA Senior Language Analyst, mentor, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Dr. Whitfield Diffie, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Dr. Whitfield Diffie
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Dr. Whitfield Diffie, computer security pioneer and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Barbara A. McNamara, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Barbara A. McNamara
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Barbara A. McNamara, former NSA Executive Assistant to the Director, former NSA representative to the Department of Defense, former Deputy Director NSA, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Dr. David Kahn, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Dr. David Kahn
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Dr. David Kahn, Journalist, Author, former NSA Scholar-in-Residence, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

George R. Cotter 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
George R. Cotter
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About George R. Cotter, former NSA Chief of Staff, NSA Chief Scientist, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Dr. Lowell K. Frazer

2003 Hall of Honor Inductee

Dr. Lowell K. ("Jim") Frazer founded modern cryptographic evaluation. As a result of his efforts, all cryptography used for classified applications by the U.S. Department of Defense and Intelligence Community is now subject to rigorous scientific evaluation. He influenced the design of most U.S. cryptographic systems fielded prior to 1990. In addition, Dr. Frazer was a prolific writer of technical papers.

His college career at Indiana University was interrupted by the world war; he received his Ph.D. in 1951. Shortly after, Dr. Frazer went to work for what is now NSA.

He was selected as the first Communications Security (COMSEC) mathematician assigned as an integrated member at GCHQ from 1954 to 1956. During this two-year tour, he performed assessments on many cryptographic systems, designed speech cryptosystems, and discovered an analytic technique that would be widely used over the next three decades. Also, he authored a training primer for new COMSEC cryptomathematicians.

Dr. Frazer was the principal formulator of standards the U.S. and the UK use to judge the strength of cryptographic systems. He continued to lead the adaptation and extension of those standards as the role of cryptography grew from COMSEC to a more diverse mission.

Under his leadership, the industrial TEMPEST program, a novel approach to government-industry interaction, matured. The program integrated TEMPEST concerns into the security evaluation process for U.S. cryptographic equipment.

Dr. Frazer played a major role in developing NSA's mathematics, cryptanalysis and Information Assurance (IA) communities. He assisted in developing the National Cryptologic School and was associated with the CryptoMath Institute from its inception. He was a member of the Mathematics, Cryptanalysis, and COMSEC Career Panels, and an Advisor to the NSA Technical Journal for approximately 20 years.

Dr. Frazer received numerous awards throughout his career including the Agency's Meritorious Civilian Service Award in 1969, the Exceptional Civilian Service Award in 1981, and the DCI's National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal in 1985. Dr. Frazer passed away in December 2013.