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In-house Research Areas

The Trusted Systems Research Group, formerly the National Information Assurance Research Laboratory, conducts in-house research in these focus areas:


Our challenge is to create practical and secure cryptographic algorithms, architectures, and infrastructures. Unlike other security disciplines that design mechanisms to protect against today's technology, our Cryptographers design cryptographic algorithms to protect against technology that will exist far into the future.

Cryptographic Infrastructure and Standards

This focus area supports security standards for information systems. We lead and influence the development of cryptographic standards to satisfy current and anticipated customer requirements. Additionally, this focus area tackles the challenges inherent in designing and developing a future public key infrastructure (PKI) rigorous enough to support the most sensitive missions. Core elements include dynamic management of groups and group membership as well as the cryptography necessary to protect the distribution of cryptovariables. With both our cryptographic security standards and PKI efforts, we collaborate extensively with external subject matter experts, with other organizations within the Federal Government, and with our Allies.

High-confidence Software and Systems (HCSS)

One of the biggest challenges facing our Nation is the integrity of the software on which our society depends. Our HCSS focus area concentrates on techniques to be implemented early in the life cycle which ensure correctness and integrity.


The globally-distributed enterprises of tomorrow assume the trustworthiness of each actor, device, service, and datum in the network. This focus area develops rigorous techniques for authenticating attributes, such as identity or location, of those constituents by integrating protocol design with intimate knowledge of hardware.

High-Speed Security Solutions

The high-speed team focuses on the engineering challenges inherent in securing high-bandwidth networks. Research tracks are in high-speed electronics, optical networking technologies, and the developing area of photonic logic research.

Secure Wireless Multimedia

The Secure Wireless Multimedia focus area's research goal is to enable end-to-end secure multimedia communications for mobile users.

Technical Security

This focus area addresses avenues for protecting information in the physical domain. We exploit our deep insight into materials and signal propagation to ensure no unencrypted information ever leaks out of our systems.

Attack, Sensing, Warning, and Response

This focus area seeks to increase the ability of the U.S. to defend its critical networks through detection and response. Our research includes development of effective methods for detecting and responding to cyber attacks including: intrusion detection systems, malicious code detection, attack attribution (also known as traceback), visualization, data reduction and analysis, and alert correlation.

Research Integration

Our Research Integration group creates proof-of-concept implementations which demonstrate new functionality and security to our customers in a concrete form.

Trusted Computing

Both the Intelligence Community and DoD need to be able to share information and collaborate situationally and selectively. This team explores new access control mechanisms which can help, such as trusted labeling and virtual isolation and containment.


Date Posted: Jan 15, 2009 | Last Modified: Mar 15, 2011 | Last Reviewed: Mar 15, 2011