Questions about the meaning and proper use of specific technical terms or notation within cryptography.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

4
votes
2answers
92 views

Classification of a stream cipher

How would one classify a stream cipher that is neither synchronous, nor self synchronizing? I would have thought asynchronous, but from all the sources I can find, asynchronous is synonymous with ...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

What is the correct name for bytes which are to be signed?

I have some bytes, and I sign them with my private key using ECDSA. The resultant (71) bytes are the signature. But what is the name of the bytes I have signed? (If this were encryption, they would ...
9
votes
1answer
104 views

A general definition for cryptocurrencies

I am trying to find the definitions to several terms related to digital currencies. Unfortunately, I am always ending up on Bitcoin-oriented pages and websites which only take Bitcoin itself into ...
7
votes
2answers
181 views

Scrypt not “old enough” to be safe?

I just check all the questions with scrypt tag about that and usually it's said that scrypt is nice in theory and theoretically better than bcrypt and PKDF2, but it's too young to be "completely ...
11
votes
6answers
6k views

Simply put, what does “perfect secrecy” mean?

I would like to ask for a clear (but maybe not so deep) explanation of what the term "perfect secrecy" means. As far as I have researched and understood, it has to do with probabilities of assuming ...
5
votes
2answers
109 views

Name and security of these non-invertible functions?

I would like to learn more about a specific set of non invertible functions: The function should accept 2 inputs: one hidden and the other visible. The output and the function should also be ...
1
vote
1answer
189 views

Self-Convergent Hashing

What is the name of an algorithm that hashes its result as an embed of larger set of data that results back to the hash? For instance where $f(x)$ is the hashed result and $x$ is the dataset, and ...
5
votes
1answer
98 views

What is an impure NIST true random number generator?

I'm working on a true random number generator, and I came across this phrase in the American NIST guide, in section 6.4.1 Non-Approved Conditioning Components: The entropy rate provided shall be ...
5
votes
1answer
37 views

What is the difference between MACTripleDES and TripleDES?

I was asked to encrypt/decrypt a string using MACTripleDES. Is there any difference between MACTripleDES and TripleDES? If, where exactly is the difference between both?
-1
votes
1answer
60 views

What is the difference between key size and block size (for AES)

We are working on AES and want to develop a website which should provide an encryption facility but we are not understanding the difference between key and the block size. More appropriately what does ...
1
vote
1answer
34 views

TCG design specification of TPM and nonce creation

I am reading TPM Main Part 1 Design Principles (PDF) which states: The creation of all nonce values MUST use the next $n$ bits from the TPM RNG. I do not know what this means, or how to find out ...
34
votes
1answer
3k views

What is a “freestart collision”?

In their work on SHA-1 collisions (cf. the currently unpublished paper “Freestart collision on full SHA-1” by Stevens, Karpman, and Peyrin) Stevens et al show that they are able to generate "freestart ...
24
votes
2answers
10k views

What is the main difference between a key, an IV and a nonce?

What are the main differences between a nonce, a key and an IV? Without any doubt the key should be kept secret. But what about the nonce and the IV? What's the main difference between them and their ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

What are SNARKs?

What does it mean and what is it used for, I have been hearing this term a lot lately. From the context I've heard it talked about it seems to be connected with zero knowledge?
6
votes
1answer
1k views

What is it meant by a “hybrid argument”?

Can anyone explain (or point to a reference for) what a hybrid argument is in a security proof, and when it's convenient or preferable to use it? Among some of the places where I've seen it ...
6
votes
1answer
291 views

Difference between actual attacks and theoretical attacks on SHA cryptographic series

Could anyone tell me what the difference is between a theoretical attack (Like the one done on SHA-1) and an actual, practical attack (Like the one done on SHA-0)? Is a theoretical attack a proposed ...
9
votes
1answer
183 views

What is cryptographic agility?

I keep seeing the term "Cryptographic Agility" referenced. What does it mean? For instance: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/bb204775(v=vs.85).aspx One of the key value ...
2
votes
1answer
102 views

Hash and salt or salt and hash?

People say "hash and salt", but aren't you supposed to salt password the first, and then hash it? So that means its called "salt and hash" right?
3
votes
1answer
77 views

What is the difference between “securely realizes” and “securely implements”?

In some security proofs it is stated that "a protocol securely realizes an ideal functionality" while in some others "a protocol securely implements an ideal functionality". Is there a meaningful ...
4
votes
0answers
111 views

Explanation of part of a visual cryptography algorithm

I have been working on a project involving visual cryptography and I am stuck with the following problem. My question is related to this paper, AN IMPROVED VISUAL CRYPTOGRAPHY SCHEME FOR SECRET ...
-2
votes
2answers
109 views

Why are there so many stream ciphers out there and even ongoing research?

What make them better than OTP using a CSPRNG initialized with a secret key?
5
votes
1answer
378 views

What is 'key agility' in relation to symmetric-key encryption?

I sometimes see, in discussions of symmetric ciphers, reference to the 'key agility' of a particular algorithm. It seems to be related to the difficulty of switching encryption keys, but I don't ...
1
vote
2answers
113 views

MD5 Collision Attack Explained

In one of my assignments, I came across this line Due to MD5’s length-extension behavior, we can append any suffix to both messages and know that the longer messages will also collide. This lets ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

SHA-256 “almost unique”?

I have seen numerous references on the internet of people describing SHA-256 as generating an "almost unique" hash. Exhibit A. there are more. Is there some mathematical basis to the almost ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

What is the difference between CPA and IND-CPA?

I am writing a paper and I got comments from the reviewer that I don’t really understand. Is there any difference between a CPA (Chosen Plaintext Attack) and IND-CPA (Indistinguishability under ...
1
vote
2answers
198 views

Cryptosystems used to generate public key certificate

Where can we find the cryptosystems used to generate public key certificate? Are the cryptosystems under the signature algorithm and signature hash algorithm? Do I need to analyze the packets ...
1
vote
1answer
95 views

Define “cryptographer”

I often encounter the phrase "I am not a cryptographer". Is there a generally accepted definition for who is a cryptographer? What qualifications would be expected? For instance, should that person ...
5
votes
1answer
114 views

Is EncFS good for online storage services?

Conclusion from an EncFS audit: EncFS is probably safe as long as the adversary only gets one copy of the ciphertext and nothing more. EncFS is not safe if the adversary has the ...
2
votes
2answers
135 views

Definition of authenticity

I came across various definitions of what authenticity means in cryptography. I would like to know which one is correct. The first definition - the one I always used - is the following: Data ...
1
vote
2answers
217 views

Attribute-based encryption for cloud storage

I'm trying to understand attribute-based encryption schemes. Almost all articles describe that they are designed for cloud storage, but as I understand, almost all computing (encryption & ...
0
votes
1answer
52 views

What is ε in differential privacy?

In ε-differential privacy, what does the ε refer to? Is it privacy value or the notation used? Can anyone provide an example of differential privacy?
10
votes
2answers
930 views

Terminology: differences between the terms “pre-master secret”, “master secret”, “private key”, and “shared secret”?

Both crypto.SE and security.SE have excellent Q&As about how TLS generates session keys (I have linked some at the bottom). In reading these threads I'm having troubles with terminology since the ...
9
votes
1answer
6k views

Why is Diffie-Hellman considered in the context of public key cryptography?

In all textbooks I used the Diffie-Hellman key exchange is under "public key cryptography". As far as I can see it is a method to exchange a key to be used with a symmetric cryptographic algorithm, ...
6
votes
1answer
200 views

What is “witness encryption”?

I recently skimmed over tho papers on time-lock encryption: “Time-release Protocol from Bitcoin and Witness Encryption for SAT” by Liu, Garcia, and Ryan “How to Build Time-Lock Encryption” by Jager ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

What is k in RSA?

I am currently learning about RSA since I didn't understand the public-key-system but now I am… kind of. So I am writing the numbers as follows: $p = prime\ number\\ q = prime\ number\\ N = ...
3
votes
1answer
84 views

What does “simulator” and “interactive” mean in a cryptographic credential system's definition of security?

Definition 1 on Page 7 of “An Efficient System for Non-transferable Anonymous Credentials with Optional Anonymity Revocation” by Camenisch and Lysyanskaya, uses the term “simulator” in defining the ...
3
votes
1answer
130 views

Is secure communication without public-key crytography feasible?

We all know about public-key cryptosystems, and we know some of these are computationally secure (for the time being, of course). Are there any algorithms out there which allow safe communication ...
6
votes
1answer
406 views

Easy explanation of “IND-” security notions?

There are many schemes that can advertise themselves with certain security notions, usually IND-CPA or IND-CCA2, for example plain ElGamal has IND-CPA security but doesn't provide IND-CCA security. ...
1
vote
1answer
82 views

What is the difference between a PRF and a PRF+?

What is the difference between a PRF and a PRF+? I am understanding them to mean the same thing, but I imagine that is because I don't understand their differences. The IKE RFC defines a PRF as: ...
4
votes
1answer
985 views

What is “Blinding” used for in cryptography?

What does "blinding" mean in cryptography, and where do we usually use it? Can you describe a sample implementation?
3
votes
1answer
904 views

Non-linearity of a boolean function

What's the definition of non-linearity of a boolean function? Roughly saying it is minimum number of times it equals any affine function. But I don't get it mathematically. For example, if $f = ...
3
votes
1answer
114 views

Generic name for (?hash) functions of form $\{0,1\}^n \rightarrow \{0,1\}^{poly(n)}$

Consider a function $$f: \{0,1\}^n \rightarrow \{0,1\}^{poly(n)} $$ with the following properties: hard to invert, i.e. given $f(x)$, hard to find $x$ hard to find a collision, i.e given $f(x)$, ...
2
votes
4answers
83 views

Definition of the term “key”

I've looked in many places (NIST, text books, online resources) and I cannot find an answer to the definition of the term "key" from a semantic point of view. Is it the "key" to cipher-texts (i.e. ...
2
votes
2answers
144 views

How to calculate if probability is negligible or not

If i have probability $Q = 2C(A\times B)$ where $A$ and $B$ are unknown probabilities and $C$ is a non-negligible probability, what can i speculate about probability $Q$ and how can i calculate bounds ...
2
votes
2answers
121 views

Inconsistent terminology for ciphers and algorithms

I've been baffled by all the different kinds of names which are given to cryptographic algorithms. There are block ciphers and stream ciphers (AES and RC4). There is symmetric and asymmetric ...
0
votes
1answer
101 views

Is adaptive security the same as full security?

This question contains a great answer about adaptive security, but I haven't yet found a proper definition what full security is. Does a stronger security than adaptive security exist or are the two ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

What is “Implicit Authentication”?

What is “Implicit Authentication” in the context of authentication methods? I searched the Web but could not find any article that describes this. If anyone can describe it, that would be a great ...
11
votes
7answers
2k views

How exactly is “true randomness” defined in the realms of cryptography?

Especially in relation to stream ciphers, I frequently read about (sometimes theoretical, sometimes practical) attacks that are able to "distinguish a ciphertext from a truly random stream". What's ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

The exact difference between a permutation and a substitution

I've noticed confusing definitions about permutation and substitution, preventing to make the difference. A permutation changes the order of distincts elements of a set, but this can be writen as a ...
2
votes
1answer
668 views

What is a fair exchange scheme?

The Wikipedia entry Fair exchange has only two lines, and the only paper I can find describing such a protocol is extremely complicated. Is this a new field in cryptology or can someone give an ...