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GCHQ's Public Key Cryptography pioneer receives prestigious award

News Article - 06 May 2014
Clifford Cocks, former Chief Mathematician at GCHQ, has been awarded the Gold Medal of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, the professional and learned society for mathematicians in the UK. He will receive the medal from HRH The Princess Royal, Patron of the IMA, at a ceremony to be held at the Royal Society, London on 14 May 2014.
The IMA Gold Medal is awarded every two years "in recognition of outstanding contributions to mathematics and its applications over a period of years". In this case, the IMA will honor Dr Cocks's contributions to developing mathematics as a key tool in cryptography, and especially his development of a practical method for Public Key Encryption, which has subsequently become the foundation of internet security across the world. The IMA also recognises his work in developing the mathematics profession: for example through his part in the setting up of the Heilbronn Institute for Mathematical Research as a partnership between GCHQ and the University of Bristol.
Clifford Cocks holds an honorary D.Sc. from Bristol University, and was appointed a CB in the 2008 New Year Honours List.
Now in its 50th year, The Institute of Mathematics and its Applications was founded to promote the development of mathematics in academia, government and industry. GCHQ is a Corporate Affiliate of the IMA