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Raluca Ada Popa: Mastermind That Trailed Encryption In Computer Security Design

Engineering is no easy cake. Which states that this technical job needs passionate brains. We are experiencing a huge technological advancement in industries nowadays. As a result of which we see people engaging themselves in this field more and more. Women are breaking the barriers and are doing a flawless job in STEM fields. One of them is Raluca Ada Popa. She pioneered in creating a computer security system that could protect data, and deviate the attackers, even if they break-in!

About Raluca Ada Popa

She is currently an assistant professor at UC Berkeley. Authored 5,800 citations, also co-founder of  RISELab which aims to build secure and intelligent systems. She also co-founded and is the CTO of PreVeil, a security startup based on her research.

Romanian woman develops software that protects confidentiality for ...

A PhD in computer science at  MIT in 2014, her thesis being about building practical systems that compute on encrypted data. She earned her Masters of Engineering in Computer Science in 2010. And her two Bachelors’s degree in Computer Science and Mathematics in 2009 also from MIT.  Her PhD thesis was awarded a George M. Sprowls Award for best MIT CS doctoral theses. She was awarded a Sloan Research FellowshipMicrosoft Research Faculty FellowshipBakar Faculty Fellowship, as a professor.

She worked closely with Professor Hari Balakrishnan(in systems), Professor Shafi Goldwasser, Professor Yael Kalai, and Professor Vinod Vaikuntanathan (in cryptography).


Before joining UC Berkeley, she did a one-year postdoc at ETH Zürich in the System Security group. And her name is now on the list of 35 innovators under 35 in 2019 by MIT Technology Review.

Her Phenomenal Innovation in Computer Security Systems.

One of her most renowned works that received amazing recognition is her computer security method. Raluca Ada Popa’s spot on repair helped to tackle cybersecurity’s most fundamental challenges. And that was to prevent the hackers from breaking in into the system, without relying on the firewalls. Interesting enough but her passion for the security, systems, and applied cryptography gave her a solution! Even though it seems like an impossible task. But she came up with an amazing computer security system.Archaic IT systems and remote working: the cybersecurity threat ...

Popa’s mastermind work started with a practical database management systems that could work on encrypted data. It was successful for simpler chat applications like WhatsApp. But it was a bit inactive for the more complicated applications. Because they need to run calculations on the data in hand, databases, and web applications. But she never gave up! Came up with an absolute remedy to cure this problem. Today, her encryption system can provide security to a range of applications. This degree of protection is soo efficient that it even beats the firewall. So even if the attackers, break in the system, there’s no way they are going to decipher the information.

According to Popa, the system works as if they have been blindfolded. That means that the system computes the data without even seeing it. This opens arms in the field of cyber-security to help out several problems faced by applications.

Her most recent innovation is, Helen. Hospitals can use it to share and aggregate patient records without compromising confidentiality. Another creation is, Opaque. This secures hardware systems against potentially compromised software. And is now used by such companies as IBM.

Know Her Innovation More

She’s an outstanding epitome of inspiration to the Women in Engineering.

To get more inspired, read her story

You can also follow her on twitter  @ralucaadapopa.

Also, check out this video of her encryption system in detail.

Find out and know more about Women in Engineering here: Silvia Caballero