IARPA Announces Two Proposer Day Conferences

July 10, 2017

Upcoming solicitations will seek tools for developing cryptographic applications and for detecting biologically engineered organisms.

The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) will host two proposers’ day conferences later this month in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area in anticipation of new solicitations. 

The first, for the Homomorphic Encryption Computing Techniques with Overhead Reduction (HECTOR) program, will be held on July 26. The second, for the Finding Engineering-Linked Indicators (FELIX) program, will be held the next day. Both will begin at 9:00 a.m.

The goal of the HECTOR program is to build a framework that enables system architects and application developers without extensive cryptographic expertise to develop a broad spectrum of secure distributed applications using advanced cryptographic techniques. The HECTOR program seeks to develop a comprehensive set of cryptographic tools, programming languages, design and verification tools to: enable application developers to incorporate new and existing cryptographic computing concepts into their software while minimizing the cryptographic expertise required of the application developers; allow system architects and/or developers to express the security and privacy properties and operational environment as desired properties of the system and automatically receive feedback on the feasibility and costs of these properties; and enable advances in the security and performance of cryptographic operations.

The FELIX program aims to develop a suite of tools for the agnostic detection of engineered biological organisms, ranging from viruses, bacteria, insects, animals and plants that are either purposefully or accidentally developed and/or released with the potential to cause harm. Ideally, the tools will expand the quality and amount of information available to distinguish engineered organisms from natural organisms, i.e., natural variation from intentional engineering. These may include technologies such as novel methods and high-throughput techniques in genomics, systems biology, bioinformatics and evolutionary biology.

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