RESTON, Va.—August 29, 2018—Noblis, a leading provider of science, technology, and strategy services, is pleased to announce that Dr. Samuel S. Gross and his team of researchers have completed the factorization of the number RSA230 into its two constituent prime factors. This 230-digit number has 762 bits and is the second largest number from the challenge to be successfully factored. Dr. Gross’ work will provide new benchmarks on the security of the RSA cryptosystem in light of modern cloud-computing resources. In particular, it is now estimated that the practical cost of breaking the RSA cryptosystem at 1024 bit key sizes, which are still in wide-spread use on the internet, is significantly reduced.
Dr. Gross and his team completed the factorization of the RSA230 challenge number using the General Number Field Sieve. A full technical report detailing the team’s methods and findings will follow in the near future.
The RSA Factoring Challenge was established in 1991 to “encourage research into computational number theory and the practical difficulty of factoring large integers and cracking RSA keys used in cryptography.” Although the challenge was formally rescinded by RSA Laboratories in 2007, the challenge remains a measure of high performance computing capabilities and the contemporary security of the RSA cryptosystem.