Women in QST with Stacey Jeffery

10 May 2021
from 14:30 to 17:00

Women in QST with Stacey Jeffery - Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI).

Women in QST Events

Address / Location


The Women in QST talk series aims to regularly feature inspiring female scientists from the field of Quantum Science and Technology. Outstanding female researchers are invited to talk about their research and current projects, as well as about their career paths with the QST community.

Women in QST with Stacey Jeffery

We are excited to welcome Stacey Jeffery from the Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI) to join out Women in QST series on May 10th.
After the scientific talk, there will be the opportunity for women* in QST to get to know other participants from various QST research institutions and exchange ideas.


14:30-15:45 | Scientific talk with live Q&A (open to the QST Community)

15:45-16:00 | Break

16:00-17:00 | Networking & Exchange (open for female* scientists in QST)

Title & Abstract

Quantum copy protection and secure software leasing

Quantum cryptography is known for enabling functionalities that are unattainable using classical information alone. Recently, Secure Software Leasing (SSL) has emerged as one of these areas of interest. Given a target circuit C from a circuit class, SSL produces an encoding of C that enables a recipient to evaluate C, and also enables the originator of the software to verify that the software has been returned -- meaning that the recipient has relinquished the possibility of any further use of the software. Clearly, such a functionality is unachievable using classical information alone, since it is impossible to prevent a user from keeping a copy of the software. Recent results have shown the achievability of SSL using quantum information for a class of functions called compute-and-compare (these are a generalization of the well-known point functions). These prior works, however all make use of setup or computational assumptions. Here, we show that SSL is achievable for compute-and-compare circuits with unconditional security, and correctness on average.

Our technique involves the study of quantum copy protection, which is a notion related to SSL, but where the encoding procedure inherently prevents a would-be quantum software pirate from splitting a single copy of an encoding for C into two parts, each of which enables a user to evaluate C. In this talk, I will describe the functionalities of SSL and copy protection, including a new notion of security for copy protection, honest-malicious copy protection. I will describe our construction, which takes any quantum message authentication code and turns it into an honest-malicious copy protection scheme for point functions, which can then be turned into an SSL scheme. This talk will be a mix of accessible high-level pictures, and some technical details that can be safely ignored by the casual listener.

This talk is based on joint work with Anne Broadbent, Sébastien Lord, Supartha Podder and Aarthi Sundaram.

About Stacey Jeffery

Stacey Jeffery © Ivar Pel
I've been a Senior Researcher at CWI since January 2017, where my main areas of interest are quantum algorithms and cryptographic protocols, and models of quantum computation. Before that, I was an IQIM Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Quantum Information and Matter (IQIM) at Caltech. I received my PhD from the University of Waterloo in 2014, where I was affiliated with the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC), supervised by Michele Mosca, and informally co-advised by Frédéric Magniez.

Registration deadline 7 May 2021.

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