11
votes
2answers
688 views

Do I have to have a different salt for each password?

Should I use a different salt for each password? In my system, there are no user names, only passwords. When a user logins in, he types in one or more passwords and the server compares the results ...
11
votes
1answer
569 views

How to choose constants in a cryptographic function?

A number of cryptographic functions have constants built in. For example, the constants used in RFC 2104 for HMAC, or the constants used in s-boxes (e.g., DES and AES), or MD5. In general, how are ...
11
votes
4answers
385 views

Tactics available to help prove security of a new system?

I believe that the accepted tactic to "prove" a system as secure is to allow the crypto-community to review it and if no vulnerabilities are found over a long period of time (5 or 6 years), then a new ...
10
votes
2answers
465 views

Definition of “pepper” in hash functions

I am confused about the notion of "pepper" in the context of storing hashes of users' passwords. Definition 1: A pepper is a secret key Looking around the Internet, for example here or here, a ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

How exactly was the finalist chosen in the NIST AES competition?

I was just reading the Stick Figure Guide to AES and came across an interesting table explaining how the winner was chosen: Unfortunately the NIST site is down so I can't gain further information ...
10
votes
3answers
744 views

How broken is a xor of two LCGs?

Suppose we define a PRG as the xor of two LCGs modulo a 64-bit prime: something like the following Python code. ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Is there an intuitive explanation as to why only the private key can decrypt a message encrypted with the public key?

I have just learned about using PGP/GPG for email encryption and one thing has always bugged me: How is it possible that a message encrypted with somebody's public key can be decrypted only with that ...
9
votes
1answer
219 views

Can Skein be used as a secure MAC in format H(k || m)?

Can Skein be used as a secure MAC in format H(k || m)? I understand it can work with HMAC, but it is fine as a one-pass MAC in the format above and resists length extension attacks. Is this ...
9
votes
1answer
627 views

Why are the initial states of hashes functions (like SHA-1) often non-zero?

There is already a question asking "Why initialize SHA1 with specific buffer?" and my question follows on from this: Why are the initial states of hash functions often non-zero? For most, I have ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it possible to distinguish a securely-encrypted ciphertext from random noise?

Say I have a bunch of data encrypted with a secure block cipher (such as AES). An attacker has unlimited access to this encrypted data. The attacker doesn't know whether the data is encrypted or if ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

ElGamal Signature Scheme: Recovering the key when reusing randomness

Show how if Alice uses the same value of $k$ to sign two different messages $m_1$ and $m_2$, using the ElGamal signature scheme, Eve can recover the value of $a$ from the corresponding signatures ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Is it possible to get an RSA encryption key by comparing the unencrypted and encrypted file?

Exactly what the title says. If I have a RSA encrypted file, and the exact same file but decrypted, can I tell the key that was used from that information?
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Knowing pre-encryption data, can we find the private key CryptoLocker used?

One of our users seems to have been hit by CryptoLocker. As a result, he has a hard drive full of encrypted files. The ransom-ware claims to have used public key encryption on the files. If we know ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Why does the recommended key size between symmetric and asymmetric encryption differ greatly?

In various articles it is mentioned that for secure communications, the recommended key sizes are 128-bit key size for symmetric encryption (which makes it $2^{128}$ possible keys?) and 2048-bit key ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Necessity for finite field arithmetic and the prime number p in Shamir's Secret Sharing Scheme

Shamir's original paper (PDF, 197kb) describing a threshold secret sharing scheme states: To make this claim more precise, we use modular arithmetic instead of real arithmetic. The set of ...
7
votes
1answer
140 views

Can cycle finding techniques reduce the memory usage of the MitM attack against 2DES and 3DES?

A 2DES like cipher $c=E^{(2)}_{K_2}(E^{(1)}_{K_1}(p))$ where both halves have an $n$ bit key is vulnerable to a meet-in-the-middle attack. Meet-in-the-middle using a big table Create a table ...
7
votes
1answer
436 views

Block cipher and parity of permutation

Can anyone explain the following text passage to me? Most real-world block ciphers build even permutations, because it's hard to build odd ones using small operations (32 bit) on larger (128 ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Is MD5 second-preimage resistant when used only on FIXED length messages?

I fully realize that MD5 should not be used in any new project, but in my particular situation I have severe CPU performance issues, so MD5 is convenient. I have read a lot about MD5 security for this ...
7
votes
1answer
532 views

Why are cryptography algorithms not exported to certain countries?

There have been strict laws about the export of crypto software to certain countries. I can understand the intent, but never gauged the fact that there is nothing stopping these countries from ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

What is the difference between a HMAC and a hash of data?

On a recent question it became apparent that there's a significant difference between an HMAC of input data and a hash of input data. What exactly is the difference between an HMAC and a hash of a ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

How does GPG verify succesful decryption?

How does GPG (or other programs using the OpenPGP file format) verify that it has succeeded with decryption (for symmetrically encrypted data)? Is something appended to the clear text so there exist ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

What is the importance of Modular arithmetic in cryptography?

Why do we use modular arithmetic so often in Cryptography?
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Linear Cryptanalysis

What is the principle of linear cryptanalysis, as applied to a block cipher ? For instance, this page gives the rough outline of differential cryptanalysis.
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Understanding CRC

There are zillions of articles describing CRC. What can I read to (more deeply) understand what's really going on? Both from an algebraic perspective and a bit-manipulation perspective, I'd like to ...
6
votes
1answer
78 views

What are the requirements of a key schedule?

In the first block cipher I designed I used a CSPRNG to generate the round keys. The purpose was to at least have a chance of creating a (hopefully!) secure cipher on the first try (but please don't ...
6
votes
1answer
239 views

What size should the HMAC key be with SHA-256?

I'm trying to generate a secret key to be used for HMAC SHA-256 signature processing. I've seen many sample of keys with variable length from 32 characters to 96 characters. What is the ironclad rule ...
6
votes
1answer
113 views

Is there any reason not to use Single-Key EM with AES and a constant key?

I've read recently the paper "Minimalism in Cryptography: The Even-Mansour Scheme Revisited" by Dunkelman, Keller and Shamir where it is claimed that the following construction (Single-Key EM) is ...
6
votes
3answers
325 views

Associative standard cryptographic hash function

I am looking for a standard hash function which satisfies the following property: A hash function $H(a,b) = F(h(a),h(b))$ with $h$ (within $F$) any standard cryptographic hash function and $F$ an ...
6
votes
2answers
295 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Diffie-Hellman Parameter Check (when g = 2, must p mod 24 == 11?)

I'm adding some Diffie-Hellman groups to a program as specified in RFC 3526, More Modular Exponential (MODP) Diffie-Hellman groups for Internet Key Exchange (IKE). When I test some of the group ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

How long does it take a quantum computer to brute force AES?

I understand that using Grover's algorithm it only requires $2^{64}$ lookups for a 128 bit AES encryption, leading people to say we need to increase to 256 bit keys. But how long would it actually ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the security loss from reducing Rijndael to 128 bits block size from 256 bits?

As you know in the past few weeks it has emerged that NIST/NSA have been involved in weakening encryption standards over a long period of time so that they can retain the ability to break encryption ...
6
votes
4answers
833 views

Compare two hashes with different salt

I'm storing the salted hash of a credit card number in a database. What I'd like to be able to do is determine if two different entries in the same database correspond to the same credit card. ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

Using a Hash as a secure PRNG

I was just looking at some NIST PRNG recommendations, specifically at Hash_DRBG. I read briefly through the algorithm, and even though it is not overly complex, it still seems unnecessary to me. I ...
6
votes
2answers
765 views

Are cryptographic hash functions perfect hash functions?

For a cryptographic hash function and input values of shorter length than the hash function output, it's pretty obvious that there should be as few collisions as possible. But are there guaranteed to ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

RSA blind signatures in practice

Hi I have a problem with moving my blind signature implementation from educational (textbook RSA) to more practical (padded RSA) side. David Chaums paper gives a following figure: $r$ - blinding ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the PRG period of stream ciphers such as RC4 or Salsa20?

I am confused about how long a stream cipher can be used before you should change the key. To be concrete, let me use the stream cipher based on RC4 as an example. Let's say I want to encrypt a very ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I encrypt + authenticate short strings into similar short ciphertexts?

I wish to manipulate short ASCII strings (namely unpredictable domain names) into a form which cryptographically assures authenticity and confidentiality, for use in the local part of email addresses. ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

SHA1 no longer considered secure for SSL Certificates — what about Cipher Suites?

Many browsers and Internet companies have recently claimed that SSL Certificates with a signature algorithm of SHA1 will imminently no longer be considered secure. Most notably, Google and Google ...
5
votes
1answer
345 views

Does salt size affect password hash security?

I use PBKDF2-SHA512 with an iteration count of 128,000 to hash my passwords. I use a CSPRNG to generate a salt per password. However, I am unsure about the ideal size of the salt. I have read a lot of ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Is RSA key size the size of private key exponent?

I have implemented a key pair generation scheme for RSA algorithm. I have taken the length of private key exponent as RSA key size, but then I've got to know that RSA key size is the size of the ...
5
votes
1answer
461 views

Proof of storage scheme

I'm familiar with client puzzles, where the client performs some work and there is a way to prove to the server that the client has done so. Is there a way to do this, but where the client's resource ...
5
votes
2answers
555 views

Why does CTR mode XOR the plaintext into the output of the block cipher rather than XORing the plaintext into the input of the block cipher?

As I understand it, CTR mode essentially turns a block cipher into a stream cipher like so: ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Estimating bits of entropy

Best ways to estimate average bits of entropy in a byte stream. I know there are different statistical tests out there (NIST, Dieharder, etc), which all do different ways of analyzing entropy. What ...
5
votes
0answers
302 views

LT codes with Homomorphic hashing

I have been working on a project implementing LT codes with Homomorphic hashing (inspired from http://blog.notdot.net/2012/08/Damn-Cool-Algorithms-Homomorphic-Hashing and ...
5
votes
1answer
4k views

Common modulus attack on RSA when the 2 public exponents differ by a single bit

This is an exam question an i have no idea how to recover the message m. John wants to send an encrypted message to mary who has a pair of RSA keys, However, John does not know Mary's public key and ...
4
votes
1answer
185 views

When all shares of a secret are given to adversary as a permuted matrix

Suppose we have a secret $\sigma$. The secret comes from a universe in which the elements are not necessarily distributed uniformly. We split $\sigma$ into $n$ shares $[\sigma_1,...,\sigma_n]$ ...
4
votes
1answer
164 views

How to generate a bilinear group of prime order p for key generation

I am trying to implement an IEEE Paper In Cryptography. I read many reference regarding an RSA key generation. But i am confused with above statement. Please someone explain me What it says with ...
4
votes
3answers
617 views

Combining several symmetric ciphers using XOR

I have seen a talk by Rüdiger Weis, where he says that you can combine two symmetric ciphers using XOR. According to him, that has the effect that its sufficient if only one of the ciphers is secure. ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

Why is HMAC-SHA1 still considered secure?

This Q & A http://security.stackexchange.com/questions/33123/hotp-with-as-hmac-hashing-algoritme-a-hash-from-the-sha-2-family says that the security of HMAC-SHA1 does not depend on resistance to ...

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