Cristiano Giuffrida wins the Dutch Prize for ICT research 2023

The Dutch Prize for ICT research 2023 has been awarded to Dr. Cristiano Giuffrida. Giuffrida receives the prize for his exceptional achievements in research into (solutions for) vulnerabilities in computer systems in general and his important scientific breakthrough in the field of hardware vulnerabilities in particular. Cristiano Giuffrida is associate professor and co-leads the Systems and Network Security Group of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The prize consists of a cash prize of € 50,000, which can be used freely by the winner to strengthen his research.

The jury, consisting of Prof. dr. M.J.G. (Michel) van Eeten, Techincal University Delft, Prof. dr. ir. A.W.M. (Arnold) Smeulders, University of Amsterdam, chair COMMIT and Prof. dr. L.C. (Rineke) Verbrugge, University of Groningen, was impressed by the quality of in total seven entries for the Dutch Prize for ICT research  2023. From all candidates, the jury selected Giuffrida, as the jury believes that his research had an enormous impact by demonstrating that vulnerabilities in hardware are not only a theoretical possibility, but that attackers can also be exploited in practical situations. Dr. Giuffrida’s work made clear that side channels and vulnerabilities in the most modern hardware should not be regarded as relatively small flaws with limited impact, but are a systemic problem that can be effectively exploited in many cases. In addition, Giuffrida has been working on new defense techniques for these attacks, and has worked with software and hardware vendors to ensure they are actually used.

The prestigious Dutch Prize for ICT research is awarded annually to a scientific researcher who has carried out innovative research or who has been responsible for a scientific breakthrough in ICT within 15 years of earning their PhD. New this year is that the prize is funded by members of the ICT research platform Netherlands (IPN) with a grant from COMMIT\, through the Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (KHMW). In addition to the above-mentioned prize money for the winner, Dr. Giuffrida will record a video to explain his award-winning work and its significance. This will be distributed to schools and other knowledge institutes.

Giuffrida will receive his award at a ceremony during NWO ICT.OPEN2023, which will take place on 19 and 20 April 2023 in the Jaarbeurs, Utrecht.

The previous winners of the Dutch Prize for ICT research are:

  • Dr Jasmin Blanchette – VU University (2022)
  • Dr Felienne Hermans – Leiden University (2021)
  • Dr Pablo Cesar – Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI) (2020)
  • Professor Elmar Eisemann – Delft University of Technology (2019)
  • Professor Joost Batenburg – CWI / Leiden University (2018)
  • Dr Peter Schwabe – Nijmegen University (2017)
  • Professor Alexandru Iosup – Delft University of Technology/ VU Amsterdam (2016)
  • Dr Birna van Riemsdijk – Delft University of Technology (2015)
  • Professor Marieke Huisman – University of Twente (2013)
  • Dr Cees Snoek – University of Amsterdam (2012)
  • Professor Bettina Speckmann – Eindhoven University of Technology (2011)

About KHMW

The Royal Holland Society for Sciences and Humanities was founded in 1752. Its goal is to promote science and to build bridges between science and society. It does so by holding competitions, presenting awards for scientific achievements, organizing lectures and staging scientific conferences. The Royal Holland Society for Sciences and Humanities has been based at Hodshon House in Haarlem since 1841.