# Tagged Questions

HMAC is a method for constructing a message authentication code based on a cryptographic hash function.

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### Is this algorithm secure?

I recently found this site, proposing a hashing algorithm for passwords. They describe the following: pad the password on both sides with SHA1(email) to ...
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### Alternatives to HMAC + CBC?

I'm looking at using HMAC + CBC. The combination looks like this: ciphertext = AES256(text, k1) data = HMAC-SHA256(iv | ciphertext, k2) | iv | ciphertext Where: ...
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### Does knowledge of original file size provide a cryptographic weakness?

I'm encrypting files using an AES-256 CBC cipher and an SHA-256 HMAC every 64KB in the file. Since AES CBC needs an amount of input bytes to be divisible by 16, I use PKCS#7 padding to bring the ...
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### Is it worth applying a MAC on data in a HSM?

I'm building a basic HSM out of an Arduino, and am using the following scheme to store data: Master symmetric key $k_m$ stored in firmware (secure bit set to prevent trivial extraction). Secondary ...
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### SHA256 HMAC brute force with chosen plaintext attacks

This is a follow up to Is It Possible To Reconstruct a Cryptographic Hash's Key I am using a SHA-256 HMAC function on a single-word input: sha256hmac(privatekey,word) = output. The private key length ...
148 views

### Using the same secret key for encryption and authentication in a Encrypt-then-MAC scheme

Is it a weakness to use a single shared secret for protecting messages using a Encrypt-then-MAC scheme? Assuming a system is using AES-256-CBC and a SHA1-HMAC and the same secret key for both ...
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### How secure is passing a MAC to Python's random.seed before using random.choice to generate a MAC?

I'd like to use Python's random.choice seeded with a HMAC-SHA1 tag to generate a MAC encoded in a variable set of chars. ...
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### AES+CTR+HMAC Encryption and Authentication on an Arduino

In my project we would like to encrypt and authenticate the the communication channel between our server and our Arduino nodes, which relies on an underlying TCP channel. We have chosen AES in CTR ...
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### Case insensitive verification of HMAC / Base64 signature

I am signing a short message using the base64 of an HMAC, like this (python): ...
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### RSA digital signature vs authenticated cipher

I want to provide both confidentiality and integrity for data at rest (many large files stored on disk). I plan to encrypt the data using AES, which will cover the confidentiality requirement. So ...
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### Single-purpose symmetric encryption scheme for single files

I'm writing a simple password manager program that will encrypt/decrypt a single file (it's size will most likely stay under a few K). This is my initial file format design: ...
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### Brute forcing an HMAC

Given current technology such as GPUs and GPU cracking software I was wondering if anyone has an idea on how long it would take to brute force the key used to derive an HMAC?
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### What is the difference between MAC and HMAC?

In reference to this question, what are the "stronger security properties" that HMAC provides over MAC. I got that MAC requires an IV whereas HMAC doesn't. I also understood that MAC may reveal ...
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### 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 ...
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### What information to include when calculating the HMAC of ciphertext

I'm aware that it's crucial to include the IV when calculating the HMAC of a ciphertext (assuming an IV is used). Can anyone explain, in simple terms, why this is? Furthermore, assume that there is ...
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### Deriving HMAC key and cipher key from passphrase? [duplicate]

I'm encrypting a file with AES-256 in CBC mode. I needed to add an HMAC for authentication and validation of the file contents and passphrase, so I used a SHA-256 HMAC over chunks of my file ...
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### Cryptographic Primitive Method

Is there any cryptographic primitive bijective (one-to-one and onto) function for creating cryptographic tools like symmetric encryption/decryption, Hash code generator, MAC, HMAC and Random number ...
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### Is Encrypt+HMAC stronger than AEAD?

There are a few posts that I've come across that seem to infer that using regular encryption and a MAC might be better than using the newer AEAD (ie: AES/GCM) modes. ...
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### Security for IV in AES-GCM mode

I'd like to use AES-GCM instead of HMAC for authentication and privacy in a token used in a web application, but I'm unsure how to securely tag each token with an IV. Is it safe for me to prepend the ...
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### HMAC for short messages

I am using HMAC (hmac-sha256 to be precise) message authentication without encryption. My question is, is having a short message make it easy to determine what my secret key is? My C# code is as ...
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### Future-Proof Versioning and Validation

I am working on a library (using standard primitives: AES256 CTR; HMAC with SHA256; PBKDF2 with SHA256, 128 bit salt, and 10000 rounds) to encrypt and decrypt data, given a password. The encrypted ...
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### Which risks are associated with deriving multiple keys from the same DH secret Z?

NIST recommends Krawczyk's HMAC-based key derivation function (HKDF) in SP-800-56C (PDF). HKDF shall e.g. be used to create keys from shared secrets after Diffie Hellman key establishment. NIST ...
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### why these specific values used to initialize ipad & opad in HMAC [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What do the magic numbers 0x5c and 0x36 in the opad/ipad calc in HMAC do? I'm reading the book Network Security Essentials written by William Stallings. in this book,in ...
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### Is it considered insecure in an HOTP implementation to publicly provide the next counter?

I am working on a project that needs to securely authenticating one or more smartphone clients with a server running on a microcontroller so it has very limited resources. I have found plenty of ...
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### Is the mod_auth_tkt scheme secure?

The third-party Apache plugin mod_auth_tkt uses a tragically-not-HMAC construction: ...
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### Why is the salt used only once in PBKDF2, while the password is used often?

The purpose of PBKDF2 is to create a derived key (DK) from a master password (PW) and a salt, often using a function like HMAC-SHA256. I have read that the salt should be as random as possible. But ...
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### What are the safe ways to derive HMAC key using block cipher?

Suppose we have a state of block cipher initialized with some key unknown to us, that is, we have the state after running key schedule, but we have no access to actual key or subkeys, all we can do is ...
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### Purpose of outer key in HMAC

From what I know, the HMAC constructions has two strength: It's resistant to length extensions Since the key is consumed before the message, the attacker does not know the initial state, preventing ...
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### Which of these 3 AES 128 symmetric encrypt/decrypt routines is most secure?

I am developing a symmetric en-/decryption routine written in c# for a database containing user-specific, sensitive information. I have narrowed down the implementation to 3 different approaches, ...
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### What do the magic numbers 0x5c and 0x36 in the opad/ipad calc in HMAC do?

Wikipedia lists the following pseudocode for HMAC: ...
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### HMAC vs MAC functions

I've read definitions of MAC and HMAC, but can't say I've completely grasped the differences. What are principle differences? When to use one and when the other?(Typical Use Cases)
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### Is this streamable combination of encryption and MAC secure?

I want to combine encryption and MAC. For encryption I use AES-256 with CBC and PKCS5Padding. For MAC I use HmacSHA512. I use the Encrypt-then-Mac approach (calculate MAC over the ciphertext and ...
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### Which MACs can be converted into a secure unkeyed hash function?

It is known that setting the secret key to a fixed, public value does not make MACs like CBC-MAC or GMAC into secure unkeyed cryptographic hash functions that could be used - for instance - for ...
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### Memory-hard operations in work-factor hash functions

I'm playing around with work-factor hash functions, and I'm looking for a memory-hard operation to make it resistant to GPU / parallel hardware attacks. I considered a very large (i.e. 64K) s-box that ...
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### Is my HMAC secure if I have a complete series of HMAC'd prefix strings

Let's say I have a long sentence, like "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog." Let's further say that I need to keep this string encrypted, so I use an HMAC. Let's further further say I want ...
730 views

### What are advantages of using a HMAC over RSA with SHA-1 hashes?

I am currently studying for an exam and this was a previous question: Give one advantage of using HMACs over using RSA to sign SHA-1 hashes. My thoughts are that it has something to do with the ...
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### DIfferent inner and outer hash functions for NIST Recommended HMAC?

The NIST recommended HMAC uses $$\operatorname{HMAC}_k(text) = H_\mathrm{out}( (k \oplus \mathrm{opad}) \operatorname\| H_\mathrm{in}((k \oplus \mathrm{ipad}) \operatorname\| text) )$$ Is it ...
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### Why does a broken hash function undermine an HMAC?

For instance, what makes MD4 a bad choice for an HMAC? In this case I am asking about MD4 because its less than ideal. I know that a preimage attack can be used to undermine the system, but why? ...
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### How to authenticate over open channel?

I am making an arduino project to open my garage door. I want to make it so users with the passphrase can open the door. Due to computational restrictions it is unlikely encryption is possible. ...
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### Undecrypt using the OpenSSL EVP API?

I'm writing a client-server encryption scheme for homework, and I've stumbled upon what might be a fatal blow to my current implementation. When using AES-256-CBC on the two sides, it's important ...
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### hmac sign data or cipher? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should we MAC-then-encrypt or encrypt-then-MAC? Ok, this may be a dumb question but I'm wondering, with an HMAC signature of a ciphertext should I be signing the data ...
292 views

### Can I determine if a user has the wrong symmetric encryption key?

We're using the Objectivity/DB object database with a custom encryption plugin that encrypts serialized objects on disk. Encryption uses AES with a shared secret key held by all users. I would like to ...