I obtained my doctoral degree (PhD) of engineering at the University of Leuven, Belgium. My research focused on improving the privacy of the citizen with cryptography. I'm currently working at the research team of Smals, which provides IT services to Belgian governmental organizations. Every day, I continue my quest for improving privacy with cryptography, which has become even more relevant since the GDPR has come into force.
At Smals, I developed a deep understanding of blockchain and, more general, distributed ledger technology (DLT). My academic background in cryptography and privacy turned out to be a perfect match, since it helps me to approach this young and heavily hyped concept in a scientific and balanced way.
Meanwhile, I have built up many years of expertise, which I use to:
by devising advanced & creative solutions
proposals on their privacy, security, scalability, ...
You are starting to be the [blockchain] reference in Belgium.Vincent (professor)
Kristof is the only person I have met so far who effectively masters the blockchain technology.Pieter
Smals (Belgian Government)
I am part of the research team of Smals, which provides IT services to Belgian governmental institutions.
I stimulate innovation by inventing and applying novel cryptographic concepts, by giving advise and by doing knowledge transfer such as seminars.
The last years, my main occupations were:
Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT)
Anonymisation and pseudonymisation of PII (Personal Identifiable Information)
Some of my activities are:
I introduced the first technical knowledge about blockchain and smart contracts into the Belgian federal government.
I advise and coach several governmental organization in a technology-neutral way and I'm involved in several government projects. For instance, I'm technical expert in the Validata project, which has been initiated by the Flemish government.
In 2004 I obtained a Master in Informatics (with distinction) with a thesis entitled: "Group and Ring Signatures", which are two related cryptographic primitives to create digital signatures in the name of a group.
In 2009, I was awarded, as PhD student, the Best Paper Award at SECRYPT, the international conference on security and cryptography for my paper: Service and Timeframe Dependent Unlinkable One-Time Pseudonyms.
In 2011, I obtained my PhD of Engineering with a dissertation entitled: “Improving privacy in applications by managing the disclosure of personal properties”. The aim was to develop and facilitate the development of applications whereby the certified personal user data that are being disclosed to the service provider are minimized, while the latter still has sufficient information and guaranties to offer its services. Today, this is called self-sovereign identity. One of the key cryptographic tools in my research were attribute-based credentials, as well as the underlying zero-knowledge proofs.
The list of my academic publications can be found here.
During my time at the university, I have been teaching various courses for various student groups and I have been coaching theses of several master students, of which two obtained later a PhD as well. Occasionaly, there is still collabaration between the University of Leuven and me at Smals. I coached, for instance, during the academic year 2016-2017 a master student on his thesis "Kruisen van persoonsgegevens met
maximale bescherming van de privacy (Linking together Personal Identifiable Data with Maximal Protection of the Privacy)".
In 2015 I passed flawlessly the online Coursera course Cryptography I offered by professor Dan Boneh, Stanford University.