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Cross-post: https://cstheory.stackexchange.com/q/41435/873

Regarding GCM, NIST specifies the following:

The total number of invocations of the authenticated encryption function shall not exceed $2^{32}$, including all IV lengths and all instances of the authenticated encryption function with the given key.

In another thread on this forum, @Lery suggests deriving session keys from the long-term key using a key-derivation function (KDF) by computing $k_s = \mathrm{KDF}(k,r)$. Here, $k$ is the long-term key, and $r$ is a random nonce generated per GCM usage. $k_s$ is the key used for GCM.

This makes sense from a security standpoint, but to increase performance, I'd like to investigate whether computing the session key as $k_s = k \oplus r$ poses any threat to the security of GCM.

You can assume that the value of $r$ is appended to the ciphertext, but is not encrypted. So, anyone seeing the ciphertext can easily deduce the value of $r$.

The adversary is said to attack this scheme if he can break the properties often associated with authenticated encrypted: IND-CCA security, or unforgeability.

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    $\begingroup$ Key derivation functions are pretty fast. You can even generate a KDF by using a single run of a hash function over the master key and a counter. Besides that, even $2^{24}\cdot16=268435456$, about 268 MB. On KBKDF per 268 MB will not slow down computation much. Note that you can use a KBKDF rather than a PBKDF (also known as a password hash). KBKDF's can be pretty fast. $\endgroup$ – Maarten Bodewes Aug 20 '18 at 14:28
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    $\begingroup$ @MaartenBodewes: I've also considered your points, but unfortunately they are moot in the application I'm working on. Besides, the question is interesting from a theoretical point of view. $\endgroup$ – M.S. Dousti Aug 20 '18 at 17:30
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    $\begingroup$ No problem, it is not an answer. But as others may read the same Q/A it is important to note these things somewhere... already voted the question up. $\endgroup$ – Maarten Bodewes Aug 20 '18 at 18:08

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