Symmetric cryptosystems assume two communicating entities share a pre-established secret key.

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Can I secure my key by XORing it with a hashed password?

I'd like to build a simple password-protected symmetric key system. The key-creation process in my system operates as follows: The system creates a 256-bit key purely at random. The user chooses a ...
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378 views

Should AES.decrypt(ct, wrong_key) return blank or wrong result?

I am trying to use AES as cipher for an application I am building. I am using a JavaScript library (https://code.google.com/p/crypto-js/) to perform encryption and decryption with AES. When I ...
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278 views

Combining two keys

What is the most secure way to combine two "random" keys X of size k (k ≤ 512 bits) and Y of size 512 bits in one key Z of size k? Result Z will be used for encryption/decryption with various ...
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2k views

Is CAST5 still a secure algorithm to use?

I just installed GnuPG for Windows. The documentation says the default symmetric cipher is CAST5. In PGP also, default cipher was CAST5. Is CAST5 secure to use? Any known attacks reported on this ...
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77 views

Contrasting Key Rotation Requirements : Asymmetric vs. Symmetric Ciphers

I'm trying to contrast key rotation requirements for asymmetric and symmetric ciphers. In the case of symmetric ciphers, we have the results such as the so called "CBC Theorem" (stated on pg. 24 of ...
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151 views

Hide message length in symmetric key cryptography

Is there any way to hide message length from adversary in symmetric key cryptography? Suppose we want to hide message length from active and efficient adversaries.
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440 views

Is this a good way to encrypt a file?

I need to encrypt a file, distribute it over an insecure channel, and decrypt it later. Using a symmetric-key algorithm. Here's what I intend to do: Get a password P from the user. Generate a 16-byte ...
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162 views

Session-specific Symmetric Key Derivation Using SHA256

I was wondering if there were any security implications of deriving session keys from a symmetric key using SHA256 in the following manner: $Ks = SHA256(Nonce||K)$, where $Nonce$ is the session ...
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169 views

Would a symmetric cipher with a keylength a big as the data length be information theoretically secure?

One-Time-Pad is information theoretically secure as long as the random number stream is evenly long or longer than the data stream it encrypts, for a "decyphered" message could have been any message ...
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105 views

Are IVs and salts the same and usable for each other uses?

I'm new in the crypto world and I've just discovered PBKDF (I used to use typed passeword as symmetric key). When using some crypto mode, you're required to ...
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176 views

Is a changing public truecrypt container secure?

I have a Truecrypt container which I want to synchronise between computers (i.e. different people, that I want to share the data with). If I used Dropbox for synchronisation and someone downloaded ...
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Understanding the definition of HGD

On the section 4.2, page 10, of the paper Order-Preserving Symmetric Encryption, the authors define two subroutines: the first one is called $HGD$ and the second one is $GetCoins$. I have doubts ...
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How to use a stream cipher to sign a message?

Are there known constructions which allow to sign a message M (let's say it will be sent as clear text) using a stream cipher C and a symmetric secret key K? So, we have M, C, K and we want to send ...
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597 views

Authentication using AES

I need to implement an authentication mechanism in an embedded environment which does not support floating point operations but has an AES accelerator module which allows for encyption/decryption ...
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Initialization vector in symmetric-key encryption

Can we use symmetric-key algorithms without an initialization vector? I am making an app where both the sender and receiver share a key and there is no way to create an initialization vector for each ...
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298 views

Why is hybrid encryption more effective than other encryption scheme?

Currently I am learning about Hybrid Encryption but I was not able to find any good study material. Below is my understanding: One of the reason why we use ...
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105 views

Is it safe to initialize secret keys by just reading /dev/random on Linux?

For a software, I don't want the user to choose weak keys, so I plan to just read the needed number of bytes from /dev/random to create the needed secret keys. Is it safe to do so?
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205 views

Encrypt with one cipher and decrypt with a different cipher?

I recently installed an android app called Secret Space Encryptor and think I found a serious flaw in it. Let me explain: This app provides a variety of different ciphers to use and I used Threefish ...
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712 views

How can mega store my login details and still be secure?

I understand how Mega's encryption works. For a quick summary of all those in the future looking for an answer on this... here is how it works: Upon first signing up for an account you make a ...
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550 views

Are there standards for transport layer security using only symmetric keys?

I have an embedded system with AES-128 implemented in hardware. There is very little flash/RAM and the (8-bit) CPU runs relatively slowly. Public key crypto isn't a viable option. This system is ...
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452 views

What is the best way to send two floating point numbers to a server on the internet from a small device such as an arduino?

I was thinking about sending some sensitive data (temperature) from an arduino (AVR 8-bit processor) to a server on the internet. But I would like to make sure that it would not be possible for Eve ...
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How to distribute session keys in public key cryptography?

In public key cryptography we can also use session keys which are symmetric. How do the sender (say a server) provides this session key information to its clients? If the sender (here server) ...
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Ciphers in CBC mode reveal place of change in plaintext

Theoretically, when using a symmetric block cipher in CBC mode, the current block is dependent on the previous block. Suppose one plaintext is encrypted using CBC, and then one bit of it is changed, ...
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374 views

When confusion is applied during encryption?

I know confusion is used in cryptography to make it more difficult to identify any relationship between the ciphertext and the symmetric key. I want to know when the confusion is applied during ...
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473 views

Is symmetric encryption vulnerable to plain-text-attacks?

Imagine that Bob sends a message to Alice for symmetric encryption to send to Charlie. (Only Alice and Charlie know the key.) Alice sends the encrypted message back to Bob to send to Charlie. Can Bob ...
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48 views

Multi-target attacks on AES-CTR with a random nonce

128-bit block ciphers are vulnerable to multi-target attacks where the attacker seeks to attack a collection of keys instead of a single key. A simple example: Generate keys $k_1, k_2, ...
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119 views

Encrypt a message with hash function, shared symmetric key, but no cipher

I am very new to Crypto and need some clarification or input. The question is: Suppose that Alice wants to encrypt a message for Bob, where the message consists of three plaintext blocks, $P_0$, ...
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142 views

Can I decrypt the message having it encrypted with different keys?

I have some encrypted binary data I want to decrypt. I know nothing about it, but I can get it encrypted with as many different (random, unknown) symmetric keys as I want. The keys are long enough to ...
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709 views

What are the pros/cons of using symmetric crypto vs. hash in a commitment scheme?

In a commitment scheme, are there any differences on using a symmetric cipher versus using a hash? If at the "opening", I have to reveal $r$ (a random number concatenated with the messaged at the ...
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284 views

Can we decrypt in this order when the message is encrypted twice?

If we encrypt a message twice with symmetric key $k_1$ first and then $k_2$ like $E_{k2}\{E_{k1}\{m\}\}$ , ideally we should decrypt with $k_2$ first and then $k_1$ but is it possible to decrypt with ...
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401 views

Requiring a “supervisor” key pair and a “user” key pair to decrypt multiple-recipient messages

I've been toying with some encryption scenarios recently. One of the hard ones I came across is a multi-party system. So we have Bob -- The person who sends the message (and knows it's recipients) ...
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655 views

Symmetric encryption mode where ciphertext size is plain text size

I've had many questions on Stackoverflow on how to minimize the output of a cipher - during encryption of course - to the same size as the input. Obviously this is possible for a single block of ...
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506 views

Why is RSA usually limited to messages up to 1 block

I'm wondering why RSA encryption usually is only used for messages that fit into one block. For larger messages hybrid encryption in combination with symmetric ciphers like AES seem to be the solution ...
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Is appending the hash of the plaintext to the end of an encrypted message sufficient to ensure integrity?

Is appending the hash of the plaintext to the end of an encrypted message sufficient to ensure integrity? My reasoning is that the attacker doesn't know all the plaintext, so by having a hash, the ...
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2k views

ASCII to same-length ASCII encryption?

I need to encrypt an ASCII string [a-zA-Z0-9:] to an ASCII [a-zA-Z0-9] string of the same length. It doesn't have to be unbreakable, it's sufficient that it won't be readable at the first sight. The ...
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213 views

AES: Is it safe to encrypt same cleartext with same key but with million diferent IV?

The encryption mode that I am using is CBC. Algorithm is AES and the key size is 128bit. I will be encrypting a 36 byte string over 1.3 million times with the same key but with a random IV. My ...
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563 views

Serpent cipher : Osvik S-Boxes confusion and test vectors

I'm having hard time with the implementation of the S-Boxes by Osvik found in this paper: Speeding up Serpent. At the end of the paper, all the s-boxes are given and then, I just implement them. ...
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What's the difference between the long term key and the session keys?

I'm currently studying secret key cryptography, and I've come across the terms "long-term key" and "session key". What's the difference between these two kinds of keys?
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286 views

efficient authentication with broadcast encryption?

(I am not a crypto expert, so I apologize if the terminology I use is incorrect.) Suppose I have the following simple broadcast encryption scheme for securely sending content to $n$ authorized ...
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47 views

Is the security of an HMAC equally important as the security of the cipher itself?

I'm a little unclear on how hash based MAC works... So I would like to know, is the security of your hash function as important as the security of the overall cipher? Basically, if you can crack the ...
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159 views

Indistinguishable encryptions in the presence of an eavesdropper equivalence

I'm trying to prove that definition 5 and definition 6 in this document are equivalent. This is what I've done at the moment: Asume that the scheme has Indistinguishable encryptions in the presence of ...
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81 views

Should I use distinct MACs for each user, or should I use a *direction* flag when communicating?

Alice and Bob want to communicate using a stream cipher. At the beggining, they create a session key $K_s$ and exchange it via some secure channel (using some asymmetric algorithm). After every ...
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1answer
749 views

Generating an IV for ESP 3DES-CBC

I have an application written in C, running in Linux. It uses IPsec (ESP) (manually putting the IPSec packet together) to send certain packets. The algorithm used ...
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470 views

What is the best way to store sensitive information on the client?

I am very inexperienced with cryptography and would like some advice on how to store some sensitive information on client machines. I have some information stored in a central database on my server. ...
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69 views

Containers for secret key

What 'container' is used normally to store/transport secret keys (for symmetric algorithms)? I have come across PKCS12 format where a public key certificate as well as a private key can be bundled ...
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82 views

A “one time pad” can be thought of a Vigenere cipher with

A "One Time Pad" can be thought of a Vigenere cipher with... An infinitely long key A secure symmetric key Multiple ciphertext alphabets A columnar transposition I had this question come up ...
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What communications security protocols exist that aren't based on PKC?

Lets say that you have two devices that need to communicate in a secure manner. These devices can share secrets before communication takes place (This sharing of secrets occurs over another secure ...
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73 views

Symmetric-key login protocol

I'm trying to analyze a login protocol based on symmetric key cryptography. I'm just starting out, so this may very likely be a very bad idea, but nonetheless I'd like to hear your thoughts on it. ...
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421 views

KDF based on HMAC-SHA-256

Is KDF based on HMAC-SHA-256(Hashed Message Authentication Code, Secure Hash Algorithm) algorithm a suitable option to generate symmetric key from the secret key? What is the basic funda, behind ...
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242 views

Which gives better deterministic encryption SIV or Plain ECB mode?

Lets say , if we encrypt a plain text message $msg$ with key $key$ in below two ways. Which is the below would give better deterministic encryption and why ? AES-ECB($key$ , $msg$) SIV($key$, NIL , ...