International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Hirendra Kumar Garai


Cryptanalysis of Reduced Round ChaCha – New Attack & Deeper Analysis
Sabyasachi Dey Hirendra Kumar Garai Subhamoy Maitra
In this paper we present several analyses on ChaCha, a software stream cipher. First, we consider a divide-and-conquer approach on the secret key bits by partitioning them. The partitions are based on multiple input-output differentials to obtain a significantly improved attack on 6-round ChaCha256 with a complexity of 299.48. It is 240 times faster than the currently best known attack. This is the first time an attack on a round reduced ChaCha with a complexity smaller than 2k/2, where the secret key is of k bits, has been successful.Further, all the attack complexities related to ChaCha are theoretically estimated in general and there are several questions in this regard as pointed out by Dey, Garai, Sarkar and Sharma in Eurocrypt 2022. In this regard, we propose a toy version of ChaCha, with a 32-bit secret key, on which the attacks can be implemented completely to verify whether the theoretical estimates are justified. This idea is implemented for our proposed attack on 6 rounds. Finally, we show that it is possible to estimate the success probabilities of these kinds of PNB-based differential attacks more accurately. Our methodology explains how different cryptanalytic results can be evaluated with better accuracy rather than claiming that the success probability is significantly better than 50%.
Revamped Differential-Linear Cryptanalysis on Reduced Round ChaCha 📺
In this paper, we provide several improvements over the existing differential-linear attacks on ChaCha. ChaCha is a stream cipher which has $20$ rounds. At CRYPTO $2020$, Beierle et al. observed a differential in the $3.5$-th round if the right pairs are chosen. They produced an improved attack using this, but showed that to achieve a right pair, we need $2^5$ iterations on average. In this direction, we provide a technique to find the right pairs with the help of listing. Also, we provide a strategical improvement in PNB construction, modification of complexity calculation and an alternative attack method using two input-output pairs. Using these, we improve the time complexity, reducing it to $2^{221.95}$ from $2^{230.86}$ reported by Beierle et al. for $256$ bit version of ChaCha. Also, after a decade, we improve existing complexity (Shi et al: ICISC 2012) for a $6$-round of $128$ bit version of ChaCha by more than 11 million times and produce the first-ever attack on 6.5-round ChaCha$128$ with time complexity $2^{123.04}.$