(Image by Paul Schadler)
I started thinking about the RSA Factoring challenge the other day when I received my RSA SecureID fob to log into the UPMC network offsite. According to the RSA website, “The RSA Factoring challenge is an effort, sponsored by RSA Laboratories, to learn about the actual difficulty of factoring large numbers of the type used in RSA keys. A set of eight challenge numbers, ranging in size from 576 bits to 2048 bits is posted here. Each number is the product of two large primes, similar to the modulus of an RSA key pair.” So if you feel like trying to make yourself an easy $200,000, try to factor the following number as the product of two primes:
If you’re interested in learning about the history of RSA, which is an algorithm for public key encryption that helps to make internet security tick, you should read thisWikipedia article or check out the RSA Laboratories website.