# Tag Info

10

AES-GCM has the following problems: In the case of nonce reuse both integrity and confidentiality properties are violated. If the same nonce is used twice, an adversary can create forged ciphertexts easily. When short tags are used, it is rather easy to produce message forgeries. For instance, if the tag is 32 bits, then after $2^{16}$ forgery attempts and ...

8

In comparison against CBC mode and HMAC, GCM mode is quite commonly better alternative. But, I'll go to detail where it neccessarily is not. Just like Richie Frame, I also do not agree that CBC + HMAC is always the best comparison target. I've added few other details. Hope you find them useful. Against CBC and HMAC I'll discuss downsides first. The ...

6

AEAD modes like GCM are authenticated encryption with associated data; this setting only affects the associated data half of that. The ciphertext itself is still authenticated. The associated data portion is there to provide contextual information for the authentication of the ciphertext. Usually this data is something that's outside of direct control of the ...

5

Before answering your questions: GCM is an authentication encryption mode of operation, it is composed by two separate functions: one for encryption (AES-CTR) and one for authentication (GMAC). It receives as input: a Key a unique IV Data to be processed only with authentication (associated data) Data to be processed by encryption and authentication It ...

5

I suppose one of the problems (they mention several after a short reading) with a mode like GCM is nonce misuse (e.g. reuse). When the key is the same and the nonce is reused, by misunderstanding the concept or by a simple programming error, information about the plain texts can be revealed. Phillip Rogaway has already defined an encryption mode (SIV, ...

5

I don't see any obvious way to do this without violating the security of GCM; at least, if you are at all concerned with an evesdropper (and if you're not, why are you encrypting at all?) Here is a distallation of your requirements: you want to have the sender send the ciphertext (including nonce, ciphertext and tag). Then, you want the sender to be able ...

4

eBACS, as given by CodesInChaos, is a great resource, and it provides much more data than I could hope to give in this answer. However, the page is not explicit about whether or not AES-NI was used — looking at the results, it doesn't seem so. For an extremely shallow analysis, but allowing us to know for-sure about hardware acceleration, we can use ...

4

AES-GCM uses single block cipher operation and can be processed in parallel, therefore it should be faster. CTR+HMAC requires block cipher and hash function, which usually can't be processed in parallel. Also it requires 2 keys. It is often miss-implemented (MAC-than-encrypt or MAC-and-encrypt, using single key). Cipher-text length is the same for same ...

3

Unless you are absolutely sure that you don't need to and that the cost is going to be significant then I would absolutely say you should use authenticated encryption. One reason is bit-flipping attacks - flipping a few bits at the 'right' point in your encrypted message might lead well to a message that is legal (the classic example is if someone learns ...

3

No it is not less secure. GCM and a number of other authenticated modes typically let you specify optional data which is authenticated but not encrypted. That is all this is. So the code is making it explicit that there is no data that is only authenticated.

3

You could, however the one part that doesn't translate in an obvious manner is the Galois field representation; you would need to pick a field representation for $GF(2^{256})$ and $GF(2^{512})$, because those have not be predefined for those sizes. Here's the issue; GCM does field multiplications internally; that is, it takes two $N$-bit vectors (where $N$ ...

3

The usual mode for disk encryption is XTS (let's say the mode suggested by the NIST). AEAD cipher seems to be promissing but typically with the GCM you will have also to store an authentication tag per encrypted block which may lead to a complex implementation (but interesting). I believe that regarding at least integrity, there exist "new" file systems ...

3

GMAC is quite simply GCM mode where all data is supplied as AAD (or additional authenticated data), or as NIST SP 800-38D puts it: If the GCM input is restricted to data that is not to be encrypted, the resulting specialization of GCM, called GMAC, is simply an authentication mode on the input data. If you don't have access to a cryptographic provider ...

2

There exists a case where developers implemented a new version of the GHASH algorithm that used the new PCLMULQDQ instruction found in Intel processors, and a bug in the implementation allowed message forgery. The code change appeared to improve the performance of AES-GCM on newer processors as well as processors with additional cores that do not support ...

1

One of the major advantages of GCM is the authenticated data input that you can pass. Think about headers of a message that you want authenticated but not encrypted. This is a great thing to have in many practical implementations where some data has to stay in clear but manipulating it by an attacker has serious consequences.

1

I don't see any reason to expect this to provide integrity (INT-PTXT or INT-CTXT). In fact, if $R1,R2$ were known to the attacker, I can show that in general it does not provide integrity: there exist some encryption algorithms that are IND-CPA secure but where your scheme does not provide integrity. (e.g., any stream cipher.) This sounds like a ...

1

If you don't mind that the ciphertext is longer than the plaintext, GCM is perfectly fine for storage encryption. Every time you write a block to disk, choose a fresh nonce and write the resulting ciphertext to disk. (You can ask for even stronger security properties, but then everything gets more expensive. Basically, build a tree structure for tags. Reads ...

1

Yes, as long as you obey all the total usage limits and choose the IV appropriately (see below). Whilst IV is a general term for any initialisation vector the recent trend has been to use the term 'IV' to refer to a random vector, and "nonce" (a contraction of "n-umber used once") to refer to an input vector that need not be random, but cannot be repeated. ...

1

IV (initial value or initialization vector) is a vague term that describes some kind of starting value for a mode of operation that is known to both parties, and generally sent in the clear with the encrypted data (and known to the attacker) IVs in many modes of operation have specific requirements to that mode. In some modes the requirement is that is ...

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