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In addition to Ilmari's excellent answer I would like to address your questions and clarify some points for you: I am trying to understand why is bcrypt called a Key Derivation Function? Because it derives a key from given input. This key is then used as unique value for a password in the case it is used for password hashing. bcrypt is a Password Based ...


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It's called a key derivation function because that's what you'd typically use its output for — as a key for some other cryptographic algorithm. (Of course, you can also use the output of Bcrypt for other purposes, e.g. storing it in a database as a password hash, but that's really a secondary use case.) In general, key derivation functions (KDFs) ...


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I don't think it is a good idea, for two main reasons. Firstly, you are basing your security on the obscurity of a parameter that was not designed initially for being secret, which is a risky practice. It is similar to hiding the salt. Secondly, following your example, you may in principle think that a random number of iterations between 10 and 100,000 is ...


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With a KDF meeting its objectives, the only way the leak of the persisted key compromises the confidentiality of the other is correctly identified in the question: a password guess can be checked at the cost of one evaluation of the KDF based on the leaked key and its corresponding salt (and assuming the password's entropy is significantly less than the ...



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