Elliptic curves are a mathematical structure. In cryptography, it is common to use the structure $y^2 = x^3 + ax^2 + b$ over a finite field. Questions relating to elliptic curves and derived algorithms should use this tag and might also consider specific tags such as discrete-logarithm and ecdsa.

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65
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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 -- ...
58
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3answers
36k views

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 ...
35
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6answers
13k 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 ...
27
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1answer
24k 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 ...
20
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3answers
17k 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 ...
18
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4answers
11k 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 ...
17
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5answers
3k views

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 ...
14
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3answers
743 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 ...
13
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3answers
1k 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 ...
13
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2answers
967 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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1answer
640 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 ...
11
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2answers
941 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, ...
10
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2answers
678 views

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 ...
10
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2answers
883 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.
10
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3answers
915 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 ...
9
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1answer
2k 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 ...
9
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3answers
396 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 Caslte, for example, ...
8
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1answer
1k 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 ...
8
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1answer
465 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 ...
8
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1answer
678 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 ...
7
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2answers
471 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? ...
7
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1answer
4k 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 ...
7
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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 ...
7
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1answer
124 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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2answers
386 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), ...
6
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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 ...
6
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1answer
643 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
votes
1answer
465 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
117 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
votes
2answers
428 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
votes
1answer
1k views

What are the advantages of a static ECDH key?

What are the advantages of using "static-ephemeral ECDH" over "ephemeral-ephemeral ECDH"?
6
votes
2answers
544 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
188 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 ...
6
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1answer
422 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
545 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
1answer
224 views

Is the Representation Problem hard on elliptic curves?

The RP in ECC would be to find $a_1,\ldots,a_n$ (integers) given $P$ and $Q_1,\ldots,Q_n$ (points in the EC) such that $P = a_1 \cdot Q_1 + \ldots + a_n \cdot Q_n$. Is it hard when DH-like ...
6
votes
1answer
176 views

Are there security issues with discrete logarithm keys not being uniformly distributed?

Generally, algorithms based on discrete logarithm specify that private keys are chosen as scalars between 1 and the order of the group (denoted $q$ here). For instance IEEE P1363 and FIPS 186-3 both ...
6
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1answer
118 views

Are there groups where the computational Diffie Hellman problem is easy but the discrete log problem is hard?

I know that there are elliptic curve groups, used in pairing-based cryptography, where the decisional Diffie Hellman problem (ie. given $g$, $g^a$, $g^b$ and $c$, determine if $c = g^{ab}$ is easy but ...
6
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1answer
247 views

What exactly could be accomplished with a backdoor in Dual_EC_DRBG?

Assume that some entity really holds the private key corresponding to the recommended/dubious constants of Dual_EC_DRBG. According to this presentation, they would be able to reconstruct the internal ...
5
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2answers
630 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
277 views

In elliptic curve cryptography, how is “A dot A” computed?

I was just reading Ars Technica's primer on ECC. Somewhere near the middle of the second page, the author introduces the "dot" operation that takes an elliptic curve and two other known points, giving ...
5
votes
1answer
199 views

Elliptic Curve Cryptography

I have been trying this for a while. But I couldn't get it. How can I determine the point of intersection of the tangent line at (0, 0) on the curve $y^2 + y = x^3 + x^2$ ?
5
votes
1answer
112 views

Side-channel attacks against ECDH for Weierstrass normal form curves

I hear a lot about why Montgomery curves are used in ECC, and one reason is that the same algorithm can be used to do both point addition and doubling (this is not true for the Weierstrass normal ...
5
votes
1answer
107 views

How can I find the order of the group that an elliptic curve is defined over?

I have a Weierstrass elliptic curve ($y^2=x^3+a \times x+b \mod p $) How can I find the order of the group itself? I have seen Mathematica has a GroupOrder[] ...
5
votes
1answer
66 views

point addition equation in projective co ordinates

How can I get point addition equation for elliptic curves in projective co ordinate system ? Can I get it by changing $$ x = X/Z $$ and $$ y =Y/Z $$ in the equation for affine co ordinates' group law ...
5
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2answers
127 views

Is it safe to reuse ECDH asymmetric keys for authentication?

Alice, Bob, and Carol each generate ECDH keypairs. Alice and Bob establish a communication channel and negotiate an AliceBob secret. The question is: Is it safe for Alice and/or Bob to reuse their ...
5
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1answer
109 views

cryptographically good random elliptic curves?

After an answer here, about generate elliptic curves, I've start thinking about the algorithm. The mentioned algorithm will produce curves in the Weierstraß Reduced Form (WRF) over finite fields: ...
5
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1answer
795 views

Why is the P-521 elliptic curve not in Suite B if AES256 is?

In the NSA's document, "The Case for Elliptic Curve Cryptography", we have ...
5
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1answer
546 views

Elliptic curves for ECDSA

i'm trying to implement parameters generation for ECDSA according to SEC1 v2.0: Input: The approximate security level in bits = t is {80, 112, 128, 192, 256} ...
5
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1answer
221 views

How can I use Weierstrass curve operations with a=-3 for implementing operations for a=0?

I am working with golang's elliptic library. It implements functions on Weierstrass elliptic curves with $a=-3$. I need to make my own library that allows me to handle curves with $a=0$. I understand ...