International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Arnab Bag


Divided We Stand, United We Fall: Security Analysis of Some SCA+SIFA Countermeasures Against SCA-Enhanced Fault Template Attacks
Protection against side-channel (SCA) and fault attacks (FA) requires two classes of countermeasures to be simultaneously embedded in a cryptographic implementation. It has already been shown that a straightforward combination of SCA and FA countermeasures are vul- nerable against FAs, such as Statistical Ineffective Fault Analysis (SIFA) and Fault Template Attacks (FTA). Consequently, new classes of countermeasures have been proposed which prevent against SIFA, and also includes masking for SCA protection. While they are secure against SIFA and SCA individually, one important question is whether the security claim still holds at the presence of a combined SCA and FA adversary. Security against combined attacks is, however, desired, as countermeasures for both threats are included in such implementations. In this paper, we show that some of the recently proposed combined SIFA and SCA countermeasures fall prey against combined attacks. To this end, we enhance the FTA attacks by considering side-channel information during fault injection. The success of the proposed attacks stems from some non-trivial fault propagation properties of S-Boxes, which remains unexplored in the original FTA proposal. The proposed attacks are validated on an open-source software implementation of Keccak with SIFA-protected χ 5 S-Box with laser fault injection and power measurement, and a hardware implementation of a SIFA-protected χ3 S-Box through gate-level power trace simulation. Finally, we discuss some mitigation strategies to strengthen existing countermeasures.
Fault Template Attacks on Block Ciphers Exploiting Fault Propagation 📺
Fault attacks (FA) are one of the potent practical threats to modern cryptographic implementations. Over the years the FA techniques have evolved, gradually moving towards the exploitation of device-centric properties of the faults. In this paper, we exploit the fact that activation and propagation of a fault through a given combinational circuit (i.e., observability of a fault) is data-dependent. Next, we show that this property of combinational circuits leads to powerful Fault Template Attacks (FTA), even for implementations having dedicated protections against both power and fault-based vulnerabilities. The attacks found in this work are applicable even if the fault injection is made at the middle rounds of a block cipher, which are out of reach for most of the other existing fault analysis strategies. Quite evidently, they also work for a known-plaintext scenario. Moreover, the middle round attacks are entirely blind in the sense that no access to the ciphertexts (correct/faulty) or plaintexts are required. The adversary is only assumed to have the power of repeating an unknown plaintext several times. Practical validation over a hardware implementation of SCA-FA protected PRESENT, and simulated evaluation on a public software implementation of protected AES prove the efficacy of the proposed attacks.