On Breaking the Iterated Merkle-Hellman Public-Key Cryptosystem

  • Leonard M. Adleman


In 1976 Diffie and Hellman introduced the concept of a public-key cryptosystem [1]. In 1977 Rivest, Shamir, and Adleman discovered the first incarnation of such a system [4], and soon afterwards Merkle and Hellman produced a second one [3]. Despite the widespread interest in the area, the years have produced no other public-key cryptosystems which have attracted widespread interest.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. [1]
    Diffie, W., and Hellman, M. E., “New directions in cryptography,” IEEE Trans. Information Theory, IT-22, Nov. 1976, pp. 644–654.Google Scholar
  2. [2]
    Lenstra, A. K., Lenstra, H. W., and Lovacz, L., “Factoring polynomials with rational coefficients,” Report 82–05, March 1982, Department of Math., Univ. of Amsterdam.Google Scholar
  3. [3]
    Merkle, R. C., and Hellman, M. E., “Hiding information and signatures in trapdoor knapsacks,” IEEE Trans. Information Theory, IT-24, Sept. 1978, pp. 525–530.Google Scholar
  4. [4]
    Rivest, R., Shamir, A., and Adleman, L., “A method for obtaining digital signatures and public-key cryptosystems,” CACM 22–2, Feb. 1978.Google Scholar
  5. [5]
    Shamir, A., “A polynomial time algorithm for breaking th basic Merkle-Hellman cryptosystem,” Proc. 23rd Annual Foundations of Computer Science, 1982.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leonard M. Adleman
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Southern California and Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyUSA

Personalised recommendations