IC3: Advancing the science and applications of blockchains

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by Kushal Babel, Yan Ji, Ari Juels, and Mahimna Kelkar on April 17, 2023
In today’s blockchain landscape, the life of a transaction is nasty, brutish, and short. Or, as some put it, a blockchain like Ethereum is a “dark forest” — a reference to a popular sci-fi novel in which the universe is filled with predatory civilizations.
by Patrick McCorry on March 15, 2023
A very interesting talk by Kelvin Fichter argues that zk rollups do not exist and how rollups actually work. Let’s take a fun snippet from it.
by Ariah Klages-Mundt on March 14, 2023
7 of the largest 10 stablecoins depegged as a massive bank run effect rippled across crypto. What happened and what the lessons are for the space. Starting Friday, March 11, and persisting through the weekend, most major stablecoins lost their peg and stablecoin liquidity virtually evaporated.
by Phil Daian on March 07, 2023
In this post, we take a look at trends in MEV that we believe have the opportunity to centralize and weaken the core mission and value proposition of cryptocurrency. We argue that the most important only exit from a future where power dynamics in cryptocurrency become centralized and predatory is through geographic decentralization. We then explore the relationship between geographic decentralization and privacy, which in our opinion will be a dominant economic phenomenon in the next decade of MEV evolution.
by Ari Juels on January 26, 2023
Independence from centralized institutions is among the most important of the revolutionary ideas at the heart of crypto. If you keep your crypto assets in a centralized exchange, the exchange holds them on your behalf. That means complete dependence on the integrity of the exchange. If it’s hacked or collapses, your funds can disappear.
by James Austgen, Kushal Babel, Vitalik Buterin, Phil Daian, Ari Juels, and Mahimna Kelkar on January 16, 2023
In a paper we've released today, we introduce a new cryptographic notion that we call proofs of complete knowledge (CK). We also report on a prototype that offers a path to making CK practical for use with smartphones.
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August 28-30, 2023
This conference focuses on technical innovations in the blockchain ecosystem, and brings together researchers and practioners working in the space. We are interested in the application of cryptography, decentralized protocols, formal methods, and empirical analysis, to improving the security and scalability of blockchain deployments. We aim to foster collaboration among practitioners and researchers working on blockchain protocol development, cryptography, distributed systems, secure computing, crypto-economics, and economic risk analysis.
June 12-18, 2023
Join us for the 8th Annual IC3 Blockchain Camp! This 7-day experience will be hosted for the first time on the Cornell Tech Campus on Roosevelt Island in New York, NY.
Friday April 21, 2023
Cornell Blockchain Conference is returning to the Cornell Tech campus on April 21st. IC3 Co-director Ari Juels, together with distinguished IC3 alumni Emin Gün Sirer (Founder & CEO of Ava Labs) and Steven Goldfeder (Co-Founder & CEO, Offchain Labs) will be sharing valuable insights across academia and industry. We are excited to announce that IC3 is offering special discount to our newsletter subscribers.
January 15-18, 2023
Thank you to all who joined us for the 2023 IC3 Winter Retreat at the Eurotel Victoria in Les Diablerets, Switzerland! Our technical committee of Surya Bakshi, Lorenz Breidenbach, Patrick McCorry, and Haaroon Yousaf prepared another immersive blockchain learning experience.
Monday October 3, 2022
Thank you all for joining us for an evening of art and research talks to celebrate the opening of the NFT Art Gallery at Cornell Tech in New York City.
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Featured Projects

STAMP: Lightweight TEE-Assisted MPC for Efficient Privacy-Preserving Machine Learning

In this paper, we propose STAMP, an end-to-end 3-party MPC protocol for efficient privacy-preserving machine learning inference assisted by a lightweight TEE (LTEE), which will be far easier to secure and deploy than today’s large TEEs. STAMP provides three main advantages over the state-of-the-art - (i) STAMP achieves significant performance improvements compared to state-of-the-art MPC protocols, with only a small LTEE that is comparable to a discrete security chip such as the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) or on-chip security subsystems in SoCs similar to the Apple enclave processor. In a semi-honest setting with WAN/GPU, STAMP is 4×-63× faster than Falcon (PoPETs’21) and AriaNN (PoPETs’22) and 3.8×-12× more communication efficient. We achieve even higher performance improvements in a malicious setting. (ii) STAMP guarantees security with abort against malicious adversaries under honest majority assumption. (iii) STAMP is not limited by the size of secure memory in a TEE and can support high-capacity modern neural networks like ResNet18 and Transformer. For further details, please check out our Projects Page.

MPC protocols

More projects:

  • tlock: Practical Timelock Encryption from Threshold BLS
  • Security: Interactive Authentication
  • Complete Knowledge: Preventing Encumbrance of Cryptographic Secrets
  • SGXonerated: Finding (and Partially Fixing) Privacy Flaws in TEE-based Smart Contract Platforms Without Breaking the TEE
  • zkBridge: Trustless Cross-chain Bridges Made Practical
Even more projects...