Elliptic curves are algebraic-geometric structures with applications in cryptography. Such a curve consists of the set of solutions to a cubic equation over a finite field equipped with a group operation. Questions relating to elliptic curves and derived algorithms should use this tag and might also ...

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Should we trust the NIST-recommended ECC parameters?

Recent articles in the media, based upon Snowden documents, have suggested that the NSA has actively tried to enable surveillance by embedding weaknesses in commercially-deployed technology -- ...
72
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Why is elliptic curve cryptography not widely used, compared to RSA?

I recently ran across elliptic curve crypto-systems: An Introduction to the Theory of Elliptic Curves (Brown University) Elliptic Curve Cryptography (Wikipedia) Performance analysis of identity ...
36
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6answers
14k views

Who uses Dual_EC_DRBG?

Recent news articles have suggested that the NSA may be involved in trying to influence the cryptography in public standards or commercially deployed software, to enable the NSA to decrypt the ...
33
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1answer
26k views

Explaining weakness of Dual EC DRBG to wider audience?

I have an audience of senior (non-technical) executives and senior technical people who are taking the backdoor in Dual_EC_DRBG and considering it as a weakness of Elliptic curves in general. I can ...
21
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4answers
16k views

Basic explanation of Elliptic Curve Cryptography?

I have been studying Elliptic Curve Cryptography as part of a course based on the book Cryptography and Network Security. The text for provides an excellent theoretical definition of the algorithm but ...
21
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3answers
27k views

How can I use SSL/TLS with Perfect Forward Secrecy?

I'm new to the field of cryptography, but I want to make the web a better web by setting up the sites that I host with Perfect Forward Secrecy. I have a list of questions regarding the setup of ...
19
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5answers
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Current mathematics theory used in cryptography/coding theory

What are the mainstream techniques borrowed from algebraic geometry (or some other branch of mathematics) which are currently used in cryptography/coding theory? I've only heard about a small subset ...
16
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2k views

Can ECDSA signatures be safely made “deterministic”?

Using the terminology of the ECDSA wikipedia page, ECDSA (and DSA) signatures require a random k value for each signature which ensures that the signature is different each time even if the message ...
15
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3answers
962 views

What is so special about elliptic curves?

There seems to be sources like this, this also, and some introductions that discuss elliptic curves in general and how they're used. But what I'd like to know is why these particular curves are so ...
14
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1answer
809 views

Mapping points between elliptic curves and the integers

My primary question is: Is there an easy way to create a bijective mapping from points on an elliptic curve E (over a finite field) to the integers (desirably to $\mathbb{Z}^*_q$ where $q$ is the ...
13
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1answer
4k views

ElGamal with elliptic curves

I've searched some information on ECC, but so far I have only found Diffie-Hellman key-exchange implementations using ECC, but I don't want to exchange keys, I want to encrypt & decrypt data like ...
13
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2answers
1k views

Does the elliptic curve (EC) cryptosystem outperform RSA and DL cryptosystems?

Throughout the literature, it is stated that EC cryptosystems outperform RSA and Discrete logarithm cryptosystems, but I cannot understand how ECC would be more efficient than RSA and DL in terms of ...
12
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Why would anyone use an elliptic curve with a cofactor > 1?

In cryptography, an elliptic curve is a group based on a finite field $GF(p^k)$; this group has $n$ elements on it, and we work on a prime-sized subgroup of size $q$. We denote the value $h = n/q$ as ...
12
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1answer
4k views

ECDSA vs ECIES vs ECDH

Recently I started studying Elliptic Curve Cryptography and I just loved it. I want to transfer some big data (like 3KB), What is the best method, ECDSA, ECIES, or ECDH (and why)? I am confused, how ...
12
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2answers
1k views

Using same keypair for Diffie-Hellman and signing

Are there any security risks using a single key-pair for both key-exchange and signing? I'm mainly interested in using Curve25519 for key-exchange and Ed25519 for signing. But similar combinations, ...
11
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2answers
1k views

How does the MOV attack work?

What exactly is the MOV attack, how does it actually work, and what is it used for? It's explained briefly here and I'd like to know what it is more / what is it fully used for.
11
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1answer
627 views

Compressing EC private keys

For reasonable security, EC private keys are typically 256-bits. Shorter EC private keys are not sufficiently secure. However, shorter symmetric keys (128-bits, for example) are comparably secure. I ...
11
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3answers
1k views

Are any of the major asymmetric ciphers distinguishable (EG, RSA, ECC)?

Related to "Is it possible to derive the encryption method from encrypted text?". Given ciphertexts generated by any of the major asymmetric ciphers (RSA, ElGamal, ECC, etc..) can these ciphertexts ...
10
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3answers
3k views

Why is the P-521 elliptic curve not in Suite B if AES-256 is?

In the NSA's document, "The Case for Elliptic Curve Cryptography" (archived), we have ...
10
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1answer
1k views

Why do the elliptic curves recommended by NIST use 521 bits rather than 512?

Wikipedia says in reference to the elliptic curves officially recommended by NIST in FIPS 186-3: Five prime fields for certain primes p of sizes 192, 224, 256, 384, and 521 bits. For each of the ...
9
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2answers
695 views

Why Elliptic Curves?

What is the benefit of using elliptic curves over the standard finite field, when the cyclic subgroup we consider of the EC's solution group is just isomorphic to some integer residue class of prime ...
9
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3answers
3k views

Is secp256r1 more secure than secp256k1?

Curves secp256r1 and secp256k1 are both examples of two eliptic curves used in various asymmetric cryptography. Googling for these shows most of the top results are Bitcoin related. I've heard the ...
9
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1answer
7k views

How strong is the ECDSA algorithm?

Some cryptographic algorithms are as strong as the size of their key is, while other have some weaknesses that limit their strength (such as SHA-1). How strong is the ECDSA algorithm, and does that ...
9
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1answer
2k views

What are the advantages of a static ECDH key?

What are the advantages of using "static-ephemeral ECDH" over "ephemeral-ephemeral ECDH"?
9
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2answers
2k views

Are there any Secp256k1 ECDSA test examples available?

Are there any available test cases for testing elliptic curves like secp256k1 (Korblitz curves from http://www.secg.org/collateral/sec2_final.pdf)? For curves like P192 there are for example those ...
9
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3answers
851 views

Elliptic Curves of different forms

Looking at http://safecurves.cr.yp.to/ to find a safe curve, I find that most curves described here are of a different form from that generally used. In Bouncy Castle, for example, ...
9
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2answers
426 views

Pairing-friendly curves in small characteristic fields

There are several well-known techniques to generate pairing-friendly curves of degrees 1 to 36 on prime fields GF(p): Cocks-Pinch, MNT, Brezing-Weng, and several others. In extension fields GF(p^n), ...
8
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2answers
758 views

When using Curve25519, why does the private key always have a fixed bit at 2^254?

When using Curve25519, the private key always seems to have a fixed bit set at position 2^254. Why is that? Is there any good reason to use a fixed positioned most-significant-bit in the private key? ...
8
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1answer
747 views

How does ECDH arrive on a shared secret?

I read a brilliant, three part article on Elliptic Curve cryptography (one, two, three). It was able to explain Elliptic Curves to me in a way that didn't require a math degree to understand. The ...
8
votes
1answer
343 views

Does Curve25519 only provide 112 bit security?

In a recent mail on the IETF CFRG mailing list it was claimed that: The (currently missing) security considerations (or somewhere) should describe why Curve25519 is ok when used in contexts where ...
8
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2answers
1k views

Can one reduce the size of ECDSA-like signatures?

Using $n$-bit ECDSA, a signature has a size of $2·n$. It is possible to recover the public key from this signature, which shows that there is a publicly visible redundancy in the signature. Is ...
8
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1answer
169 views

Logjam on Elliptic Curves?

I think we're all aware of the Logjam attack. From now on we know that re-using primes for DH is a bad idea. But we also say that elliptic curves are safe from the attack (relying on the NFS), ...
8
votes
1answer
63 views

Edwards / Montgomery ECC with Weierstrass Implementation?

So let's assume I want to perform Ed448 or Ed25519 digital signatures or want to perform a DH key-exchange. Assume further that those curves (Curve448 or Curve25519) are required. But the problem is, ...
8
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1answer
96 views

How many bits of entropy does an elliptic curve key of length n provide?

A FAQ for an open source project makes the claim: Indeed, an elliptic curve key of length n provides $n/2$ bits of security. I have two questions: What is the practical difference between ...
8
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2answers
96 views

Why develop Edward curve formulas that deviate from unification?

Edward curves were considered initially because they provide a unified formula for both doubling and addition, thus having inherent side-channel resistance. But a lot of work has been done recently ...
7
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2answers
1k views

Is there a feasible method by which NIST ECC curves over prime fields could be intentionally rigged?

The NIST elliptic curves P-192, P-224, P-256, P-384, and P-521, prescribed in FIPS 186-4 appendix D.1.2, are generated according to a well defined process, but using an arbitrary random-looking seed ...
7
votes
2answers
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With OpenSSL and ECDHE, how to show the actual curve being used?

Using openssl s_client -host myserver.net -port 443 I can see the cipher negotiated is indeed using ECDHE for session key ...
7
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1answer
597 views

Why are elliptic curve variants of RSA “chiefly of academic interest”?

Yesterday I was thinking about elliptic curve variants of popular protocols/algorithms (ECDH, ECES[1], etc) and the thought occured that I had never seen an elliptic curve variant of RSA. My ...
7
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2answers
577 views

How does recovering the public key from an ECDSA signature work?

It is possible to recover the public key from an ECDSA signature (R,S). Please explain me how this works.
7
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2answers
755 views

Why do public keys need to be validated?

For some curves it's necessary to validate the public-key of the other side before running an elliptic-curve Diffie-Hellman key-exchange. Apparently if you don't validate the public key, small ...
7
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1answer
106 views

How to determine the order of an elliptic curve group from its parameters?

Let $\quad E:\; y^2 = x^3 + ax + b \quad$ be an elliptic curve defined over a finite field $\mathbb F_q$ where $q = p^n$, $a,b \in \mathbb F_q$ and $p \neq 2, 3$. By Hasse's theorem we know that the ...
7
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1answer
272 views

curve25519 weak points for contributory behaviour

The Diffie-Hellman on curve25519 is usually calculated using the base point $(9,…)$ which induces a cyclic subgroup of $G:=\{\infty\}\cup(E(F_{p^2})\cap(F_p\times F_p))$ with index 8, i.e. there is a ...
7
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1answer
697 views

When do ECC patents end?

As the topic says, since when can ECC cryptography be freely used? Isn't it widely used because of patents? There is no alternative to it on embedded devices and smart cards. Just to mention: I am ...
7
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1answer
759 views

Standardized parameters for elliptic curve cryptography

When an elliptic curve-based cryptosystem is deployed, a single set of public parameters (consisting of a particular elliptic curve over a finite field as well as a generator of a prime order subgroup ...
6
votes
6answers
1k views

Generate Elliptic Curve Private Key from User Passphrase?

I'd like to generate a private elliptic curve key from user input like pass phrase. Is the best way to do this with a key derivation function like PBKDF2? Is there a better way? Edit (based upon ...
6
votes
1answer
934 views

Why Elliptic curve cryptography are not popular in practice

RSA and ElGamal can be implemented using the technique of Elliptic curves. I am confused on why the it seems that Elliptic curves are not so popular in cryptographic applications since they provide ...
6
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2answers
294 views

Fast hashing into elliptic curve

Is there a fast algorithm for mapping $n$-bit numbers $s$ (for fixed $n$) into a cyclic subgroup of an elliptic curve (over a finite field) in which the Discrete Logarithm Problem is hard? By fast, I ...
6
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2answers
534 views

Besides key and ciphertext sizes what are other advantages of elliptic curve versions of various protocols?

There are elliptic curve variants of Diffie-Hellman, ElGamal, DSA and possibly other protocols/algorithms. I know that these elliptic curve variants have smaller key and ciphertext sizes which will ...
6
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2answers
315 views

Rely on NSA Suite B Cryptography?

NSA's Suite B Cryptography suggests some cryptographic algorithms for encryption, digital signatures, message digests and key agreements. The selected algorithms and their key size are suggested by ...
6
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1answer
206 views

Can somebody explain the major contributions of the tenants of the Gödel Prize 2013?

As you may know, the Gödel Prize 2013 will be awarded this year to cryptographers (see this ACM press release). The people awarded are Antoine Joux, the team of Dan Boneh and Matthew K. Franklin. Can ...