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Raluca Ada Popa

Title
Assistant professor
Department
Division of Computer Science/EECS
Research Expertise and Interest
computer security, applied cryptography
Research Description

I am an assistant professor at UC Berkeley. I am interested in security, systems, and applied cryptography.  I co-founded the RISELab, whose aim is to build systems that are secure and intelligent.  I am also a co-founder and the CTO of PreVeil, a security startup based on my research.   Before joining UC Berkeley, I did a one-year postdoc at ETH Zürich in the System Security group led by Prof. Srdjan Capkun. Before that, I completed my Ph.D. in computer science at MIT, my thesis being about building practical systems that compute on encrypted data. My advisor was Professor Nickolai Zeldovich, and I was also fortunate to work closely with: Professor Hari Balakrishnan (in systems), Professor Shafi GoldwasserProfessor Yael Kalai, and Professor Vinod Vaikuntanathan (in cryptography). I earned my Masters of Engineering in Computer Science in 2010 and my two Bachelors in Computer Science and Mathematics in 2009 from MIT.   

In the News

September 5, 2019

Seven new Bakar Fellows already are making an impact

Seven University of California, Berkeley, faculty scientists with novel ideas and an entrepreneurial spirit have been named to the 2019-20 cohort of Bakar Fellows, an honor that gives the fellows the money and time to translate their laboratory breakthroughs into technologies ready for the marketplace.

In the News

September 5, 2019

Seven new Bakar Fellows already are making an impact

Seven University of California, Berkeley, faculty scientists with novel ideas and an entrepreneurial spirit have been named to the 2019-20 cohort of Bakar Fellows, an honor that gives the fellows the money and time to translate their laboratory breakthroughs into technologies ready for the marketplace.

Featured in the Media

Please note: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or positions of UC Berkeley.
September 23, 2019
Jonathan W. Rosen
At 32, assistant electrical engineering and computer science professor Raluca Ada Popa has been named to MIT Technology Review's list of 35 Innovators Under 35, in the Visionaries category. The honor recognizes her innovative solution to one of the key challenges of cybersecurity -- how to make computer systems safe without depending entirely on firewalls. According to the write-up: "Today, her encryption systems work with a range of applications and provide a level of protection that firewalls cannot: even if attackers break in, they have no way to decipher the data. ... Popa says her techniques allow systems to operate as if they've been blindfolded. They're able to compute on data without actually seeing it -- which is opening the cybersecurity field to a host of new applications. A more recent innovation of hers, Helen, can be used by hospitals to share and aggregate patient records without compromising confidentiality. Another of her systems, Opaque, secures hardware systems against potentially compromised software and is now used by such companies as IBM." Professor Popa was also recently named a Bakar Fellow; for more on that, see our story at Berkeley News.
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