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On this webpage, Daniel Bernstein offers that the curve must be quadratic twisted secure. This means that if the curve has $\#E$ points on $Z_p$ where $\#E=p+1-t$, then the quadratic twist curve has $\#E'=p+1+t$ points. The condition for quadratic twisted secure curves is that the cofactor of a quadratic twist curve is low. For example, the cofactor of a curve is 8 and the cofactor of a quadratic twist curve is 4 in twisted Edwards curves.

If the above condition isn't satisfied, then which attacks can be applied to the curve? Please list all proposed attacks. Are all of the attacks side-channel?

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For Edwards curves the arithmetic is typically implemented using Montgomery ladder, and the algorithm works both for the curve and its quadratic twist. (Note that for Weierstrass curves $y^2 = x^3 + ax + b$, the arithmetic formulas depends only on $a$ and so the algorithm works for a larger set of curves - arbitrary $b$).

This allows an adversary to send a point on the twist to the application and it will perform the scalar multiplication on the twist (using the same private key!). If the twist has insecurity against discrete log (=smooth order), then the adversary can recover the private key.

Of course, requiring strong twist is only a precaution against poor implementations - the application should check that the submitted point belongs to the main curve - and then the attack won't work even if the twist is weak.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for your response. Is your mean an invalid point attack (or invalid curve attack)? Are you sure about this which the twist secure just applies for poor implementation? Are there any other attack except implementation? $\endgroup$ Commented Jul 17, 2021 at 8:03
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    $\begingroup$ Yes, it is an invalid point attack, which can always be thwarted by checking that the point is on the curve. $\endgroup$
    – Fractalice
    Commented Jul 25, 2021 at 19:14

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