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Can someone explain the differences between the DES challenge, the RSA challenges, and the RSA factoring challenge? What were the aims? I think the factoring challenge was to encourage research, the DES challenge was to show that 56-bit keys are too short. But how do the three challenges relate to each other?

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  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Cryptography.SE. What did you search? And what is not clear from RSA Factoring Challenge = RSA challenges and DES Challanges All started by the RSA Resaerch? $\endgroup$
    – kelalaka
    Nov 6 '21 at 18:48
  • $\begingroup$ what were the different aims of the three different challenges? according to Wikipedia the factoring challenge ran from 1991 to 2007, the RSA Secret-Key Challenge from 1997 to 2007 and the DES challenge from 1997 to 1999. The factoring challenge is clear: decompose semi-primes. What exactly did the other challenges demand? $\endgroup$
    – george s
    Nov 6 '21 at 19:18
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    $\begingroup$ It is all written in Wikipedia: The DES Challenges were a series of brute force attack contests created by RSA Security to highlight the lack of security provided by the Data Encryption Standard. $\endgroup$
    – kelalaka
    Nov 6 '21 at 19:25
  • $\begingroup$ okay, understood. and the factoring challenge was supposed to find faster algorithms. What was the RSA Secret Key challenge? $\endgroup$
    – george s
    Nov 6 '21 at 20:06
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    $\begingroup$ The top of it all. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RSA_Secret-Key_Challenge $\endgroup$
    – kelalaka
    Nov 6 '21 at 20:23
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RSA labs set up Cryptographic Challenges*

All bolds are mine!

Various cryptographic challenges — including the RSA Factoring Challenge — served in the early days of commercial cryptography to measure the state of progress in practical cryptanalysis and reward researchers for the new knowledge they have brought to the community. Now that the industry has a considerably more advanced understanding of the cryptanalytic strength of common symmetric-key and public-key algorithms, these challenges are no longer active. The records, however, are presented here for reference by interested cryptographers.

  • RSA Laboratories’ secret-key challenges

    The goal of RSA Laboratories’ secret-key challenges was to quantify the security offered by the government-endorsed data encryption standard (DES) and other secret-key ciphers with keys of various sizes. The information obtained from these contests was of value to researchers and developers alike as they estimated the strength of algorithm sor applications against exhaustive key-search.

  • The RSA Factoring Challenge

    The RSA Challenge numbers are the kind we believe to be the hardest to factor; these numbers should be particularly challenging. These are the kind of numbers used in devising secure RSA cryptosystems.

    On the other hand, Wikipedia provides better then currently archive RSA web page

    The DES Challenges were a series of brute force attack contests created by RSA Security to highlight the lack of security provided by the Data Encryption Standard.

We have a question about on the details of DES challanges of RSA


* RSA labs purchased by EMC and all of the RSA links come from archives.

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  • $\begingroup$ If I'm missing something, could you let me know? $\endgroup$
    – kelalaka
    Nov 7 '21 at 9:14

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