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Welcome to CISPA

The CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security is a German national Big Science Institution within the Helmholtz Association. Our research encompasses all aspects of Information Security.

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Focus on research

We are committed to scientific excellence and cutting-edge research, and are aiming to develop CISPA into a world-leading research center on information security.

Focus on research

We are committed to scientific excellence and cutting-edge research, and are aiming to develop CISPA into a world-leading research center on information security.

So-called Secure Encrypted Virtualization (SEV) was developed by AMD with the primary goal of making its cloud services more secure. But even the latest versions of the security feature, SEV-ES (Encrypted State) and SEV-SNP (Secure Nested Paging), were vulnerable to a software-based attack until recently. This was discovered by CISPA researcher Ruiyi Zhang, who works in the team of CISPA- Faculty Dr. Michael Schwarz. He constructed a type of attack called CacheWarp, which in the worst case enables attackers to gain comprehensive access rights to data and even the possibility to manipulate it - something that was not possible with previous attack techniques. Zhang was supported by his research team at CISPA and Andreas Kogler from Graz University of Technology. According to AMD, the vulnerability has now been fixed with an update.


Cybersecurity is a young and fast-evolving field. As a Helmholtz Center for Information Security, CISPA is dedicated to cutting-edge foundational research combined with innovative application-oriented research in the areas of cybersecurity, privacy, and artificial intelligence.

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Algorithmic  FOUNDATIONS and  Cryptography

In this highly connected world, graph problems are at the algorithmic heart of many computational challenges.

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Trustworthy Information Processing

This research area strives to improve privacy and to develop new frameworks for efficient and secure data handling.

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Reliable Security Guarantees

The fragile security of today's IT infrastructure is the result of a perpetual arms race between attackers and defenders. Formal methods offer a way out of this arms race. Based on mathematically precise models, they can systematically eliminate entire classes of attack strategies.

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Threat Detection & Defenses

Attack-detection mechanisms must be able to reliably detect, predict, and explain both known and novel threats, while also being able to cope with evasion techniques (like obfuscation, polymorphism, or stealth low-volume attacks).

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Faulty computer systems allow for spying on, as well as sabotaging, even the most critical infrastructures - this means that, for example, our energy supply network, water supply, and communication network etc. are under continuous risk.

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Empirical & Behavioral Security

We need security solutions that actually work in practice, not only work in theory. Achieving this is not possible without empirical research. We focus on the ways in which people and technology interact.

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That text was way too long, so you didn't bother reading it? We feel you! In TL;DR, CISPA's first podcast, we talk to researchers about their work on cybersecurity and artificial intelligence. Once a month, we try to ask them the exact same questions that our listeners are asking themselves.

People from 43 nations work at CISPA. That's why you'll find conversations in both German and English in this feed.

Have fun listening!


CISPA Zine: composed of CISPA and magazine, derived from the idea of the "fanzine." Fanzines are mostly small, folded magazines on various topics, created by fans for fans. The CISPA Zine is published quarterly and keeps our colleagues, supporters, and interested parties up to date on all important developments at the center. 


CISPA offers full-time positions to PhD students. Cooperating with our research-group leaders and lecturers, PhD students have the opportunity to acquire new techniques and methodologies and receive support for their research projects.

The targeted support of emerging researchers is part and parcel of our self-understanding as a world-leading research center. We support PhD students in almost all of our research areas, including cybersecurity, data protection, cryptography, machine learning, data science, efficient algorithms, network security and program analysis.

PhD students who are enrolled at one of at one of the universities we cooperate with are eligible for the position of research assistant at CISPA. We are always looking for outstanding academic talent from all over the world. Candidates must hold a degree from a first-rate, research-oriented university in a subject relevant to our research interests. They should also possess an exceptional academic record, a good command of the English language as well as convincing letters of recommendation from their mentors or supervisors. At CISPA, our working language is English.



Aug 5, 2024
to Aug 9, 2024
Cysec Camp 2024 by CISPA Cysec Lab


Nov 24, 2023, 5:00 PM
to Nov 24, 2023, 11:00 PM
Community Exchange Event #6
Nov 14, 2023
to Nov 14, 2023
CISPA Founders Fellowship – Launch
Nov 3, 2023
to Nov 4, 2023
CISPA Cysec Lab at Berlin Science Week
Oct 17, 2023
to Oct 17, 2023
Teacher's workshop in cooperation between LPM and Cysec Lab
Sep 16, 2023
to Sep 16, 2023
CISPA❤️St. Ingbert


Recruiting highly talented students and young researchers in the fields of cybersecurity, data protection and artificial intelligence is a core element of our development and growth strategy.

It is our goal to train and hire top researchers and to accompany them in all stages of their scientific career. We want to help them advance as learners, from bachelor's or master's degrees to doctorates and postdoc or faculty-level positions. 

No matter what career step you want to take at CISPA, we offer everyone a stimulating, international, competitive, yet collaborative and, above all, enjoyable working environment for research and education. We firmly believe that this is how we can all reach our full potential.