# All Questions

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### How and why can a decryption program tell me that a key is incorrect?

I have noticed that some programs used for file encryption will tell you if an entered key is wrong when you try to decrypt. It seems (to me at least) that this would mean that the key somehow is ...
629 views

### Can I jettison MAC if I already have SHA1(M)?

I'm currently using SSL with AES-CBC and HMAC for a file transfer containing string M. Now suppose Alice already knows SHA1(M) (and the adversary does not), and she downloads M from Bob using only ...
13k views

### Does the SHA hash function always generate a fixed length hash?

I'm using the SHA1/2 family of algorithms for a particular project. I was wondering if all the SHA algorithms return a fixed length hash regardless of the length of the data.
1k views

### RS Erasure Coding and Shamir's Secret Sharing

So I was trying to understand the basic difference between erasure coding and secret sharing, and I found this paper (that you can find here or here). For what I understand, it states that Shamir's ...
2k views

### Zero Knowledge Password Proof

I'm working on implementing a cryptographic system and I'm trying to understand the Zero Knowledge Password Proof concept. So here's some background: To generate a secret key I am: Doing an ECDH ...
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### Factoring two RSA modulus with known $|p_1 - p_2| < \ell$

I have two 1024bit RSA modulus $N_1 = p_1q_1$ and $N_2 = p_2q_2$ such that $0 <|p_1 - p_2| < \ell$, and $\ell$ is at most 64bit integer. Can I factorise $N_1$ and $N_2$? What's the answer when ...
203 views

### Why do we encrypt-then mac but sign-then-encrypt?

This question was asked in comments on my answer to should we sign then encrypt or encrypt then sign. I think posing the question as a separate entity is best, so: The general advice for applying ...
1k views

### Is PBKDF2-HMAC-SHA1 really broken?

I just read through this article which demonstrates practical (and seemingly trivial) collisions in PBKDF2-HMAC-SHA1, and provides a few examples of collisions. Am I missing something here? Is ...
605 views

### Convert old and busted password encryption to something sensible

Given a TOTALLY HYPOTHETICAL scenario in which passwords for over a million accounts in over 200 databases have been stored using 3DES, a key derived from a (single) MD5 hash of a customer-controlled ...
4k views

### Which one of the Block Cipher modes is the best?

I have two questions regarding the Block Cipher Modes: Which one of the modes is considered the best? I know CBC has a problem of IV since the next block of the plain text is XORed with the result ...
2k views

### How to attack a general polyalphabetic cipher?

I am able to decrypt vigenere cipher text using the index of coincidence and chi test. However out of interested how do you go about attacking ciphertext that was encrypted using a mix alphabet ...
694 views

### Can curve25519 keys be used with ed25519 keys?

Can curve25519 keys be used with ed25519? I'd prefer to use ed25519, but there isn't a fast java version. For my application, I'd like to use curve25519 until I can get a faster ed25519 for java. ...
291 views

### How to calculate entropy of a combined key

I know how to calculate the entropy of a key that relates to its selection process. For example if the key space is $1000$, entropy of a randomly chosen key is $1000$. Suppose now you have two keys ...
259 views

### Why not encrypt salt?

Assuming I had to distribute salt+ciphertext together over an insecure channel, isn't it better to store the salt encrypted? By encrypted I mean with a block cipher and with key and IV derived from ...
1k views

### How does SafeNet MobilePASS generate passwords?

We use MobilePASS at work but the latest version of the android client seems to be buggy so I wanted to have a go at implementing the algorithm myself. You can download the client to play with here: ...
606 views

### Tools for modelling and analysis of cryptographic protocols

I am designing some cryptographic protocols and I am new to it. Are there any well-known tools that can be used to model and design these protocols? And also verify or analyze their validity? If not ...
298 views

### One-way function and factoring

I am confused about the hardness of the one-way function behind cryptography -- if someone could factor the large number produced back into two primes quickly then the one-way function would be ...
368 views

### What differentiates a password hash from a cryptographic hash besides speed?

I understand that password hashes like bcrypt have the principal property of taking a long time to run, but I'm wondering what if anything about password hashes make them superior to merely running a ...
1k views

### Is HTTPS secure if someone snoops the initial handshake?

Let's say I'm on an open wireless network that's being actively sniffed and I connect to an HTTPS site. Even though my subsequent traffic is encrypted, couldn't the sniffer use the data from the ...
960 views

### Is CBC really dead?

I developed a p2p-app in C# which sends and receives encrypted text messages (50KB). For encryption, my app uses AES 128 bit in CBC cipher mode. For each message it uses a new randomly-generated IV. ...
1k views

### Are NIST's changes to Keccak/SHA-3 problematic?

NIST is working on standardizing SHA-3. They have selected Keccak as the basis for SHA-3, and they plan to make some small changes to it; the result (with NIST's changes) will be standardized as ...
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 ...
425 views

### Are safe primes $p=2^k \pm s$ with $s$ small less recommandable than others as a discrete log modulus?

I take the definition of safe prime as: a prime $p$ is safe when $(p-1)/2$ is prime. Safe primes of appropriate size are the standard choice for the modulus of cryptosystems related to the discrete ...
2k views

### Known methods for constant time (table-free) AES implementation using 'standard' operations?

There are several known methods for implementing AES in constant time using SIMD operations, mostly based around fast byte shuffling (for instance Hamburg and Kasper/Schwabe). Are there any similar ...
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### Difference between Rijndael 128 / 256 blocksize implementations? (and impact of block size in general)

Can anyone shed some light onto the advantages/disadvantages of using Rijndael with 256-bit block size, as opposed to the 128-bit (AES) implementation? (please note: I'm not referring to key-size ...
561 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 ...
2k views

### At the current time, is SHA256 the de facto standard for strong cryptographic hashes?

At the current time, is SHA256 the de facto standard for strong cryptographic hashes? From what I am seeing of more sites utilizing it, I would suppose the answer to this is yes, but would like to ...
443 views

### Hash function from narrower block cipher operated in CBC-encryption mode?

I am trying to build a public hash function (thus collision-resistant and preimage-resistant, and more generally behaving like a random oracle), with input a message $M$ of fixed size $|M|=m\cdot b$ ...
367 views

### Mapping between subgroups and the integers

This question is a companion to the equivalent question on elliptic curves. Preliminaries Diffie-Hellman, Elgamal, DSA, etc. are examples of protocols that work in the integers modulus a large prime ...
1k views

### Properties of PRNG / Hashes

There are a lot of quite elaborate PRNG's out there (e.g. Mersenne Twister et.al.), and they have some important properties, especially when it comes to crypto applications. So, I was wondering how ...
502 views

### Authenticated DH, what protocols are secure?

I read about STS + variants being insecure in the SIGMA paper, which then proposes SIGMA as a replacement. Are the SIGMA variants still considered secure or are there some other protocol that's ...
2k views

### Why does the PKCS1 RSA private key structure contain more than just exponent and modulus?

The ASN.1 spec for the PKCS1 RSA private key format is as follows: ...
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### Would it be secure to use random numbers from random.org in a cryptographic solution?

Random.org provides true random numbers through an unsecured web service. Since these numbers would be transmitted in plaintext could they still be considered useful as true random numbers while ...
5k views

### How does the index of coincidence work in the Kasiki test?

I'm starting to learn about cryptanalysis and I am having a bit of difficulty understanding the Kasiski test's index of coincidence. I have a book (Cryptography Theory And Practice by Douglas Stinson) ...
680 views

### Can one implement AES on 4-bit microcontroller?

It is possible to implement AES on 4-bit microcontroller? As far as I know, AES on 8-bit microcontroller are common especially for light weight application such as the RFID. I have yet to come across ...
326 views

### Is there an algorithm to find the number of intersections of two sets?

Suppose both I and my friend have a set of integer numbers. We want to know the number of common elements in our two sets but without knowing elements of the sets of each other. So I don't want my ...
2k views

### 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 ...
463 views

### Given a message and signature, find a public key that makes the signature valid

Given a message $M$ and a signature $S$, is it feasible to find a RSA public key $(n,e)$ such that $S$ verifies as a valid signature on $M$ (using this public key)? What if we're given one public key ...
357 views

### Can one have an authentic, but repudiable, message without a previously shared secret?

Bob wants to send a message to Alice, such that Alice can be sure that the message came from Bob, but can't prove it to anyone else. If I understand right, this means that the same message could have ...
2k views

### Accelerating SHA-1

I have a program where computing SHA-1 is the bottleneck. This is using OpenSSL 1.0.0e on a 2.6Ghz 16-core Opteron where I get about 325MiB/s throughput. (SHA1 here is via Andy Polyakov's x86-64 ...
230 views

### The effect of truncated hash on entropy

Suppose i have a 128 bits random binary string (128 bits of entropy), then i hash it using SHA-256, then i take the first 128 bits of the output hash. Does the taken bit string still have (almost) 128 ...
425 views

### Rainbow table for DES with all-zero plaintext?

Consider the function $F$ from $\{0,1\}^{56}$ to $\{0,1\}^{64}$, mapping the operative bits of a DES key to the ciphertext for all-zero plaintext. How could we organize a rainbow table to invert that ...
899 views

### Does having a known plaintext prefix weaken AES256? [duplicate]

I plan on storing data, encrypted with AES256, where the first dozen bytes are known plaintext. ('Hello World!' for example.) Does having this known plaintext prefix weaken AES256? I do not care ...
304 views

### Is there a proof for showing any cryptogram is crackable?

I commonly hear statements along the lines of "all cryptograms are crackable - it's only a matter of time". Is there a proof to show that any cryptogram is "crackable"? The proof may be of a more ...
271 views

### Is there an encyption scheme that combines additive homomorphism with ability to proxy re-encrypt?

Is there an encyption scheme that combines additive homomorphism with ability to proxy re-encrypt? I've tried digging around on the Internet but haven't found anything conclusive on the topic.
391 views

### Why the symmetric key layer in PGP?

I've been familiarizing myself with the basics of PGP. If I understand correctly, PGP symmetrically encrypts the data of interest using a random single-use key, then encrypts the encrypted data and ...
1k views

### What is the difference between a hash and a permutation?

As defined by Wikipedia a hash function is [...] any algorithm or subroutine that maps large data sets of variable length to smaller data sets of a fixed length. For example, a person's name, ...
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### How to best obtain bit sequences from throwing normal dice?

Throwing normal dice, one can get sequences of digits in [0,5]. Which is the best procedure in practice to transform such sequences into bit sequences desired?