Affiliation: SnT, University of Luxembourg
Cryptanalysis of the Legendre PRF and Generalizations
The Legendre PRF relies on the conjectured pseudorandomness properties of the Legendre symbol with a hidden shift. Originally proposed as a PRG by Damgård at CRYPTO 1988, it was recently suggested as an efficient PRF for multiparty computation purposes by Grassi et al. at CCS 2016. Moreover, the Legendre PRF is being considered for usage in the Ethereum 2.0 blockchain.This paper improves previous attacks on the Legendre PRF and its higher-degree variant due to Khovratovich by reducing the time complexity from O(< (p log p/M) to O(p log2 p/M2) Legendre symbol evaluations when M ≤ 4√ p log2 p queries are available. The practical relevance of our improved attack is demonstrated by breaking three concrete instances of the PRF proposed by the Ethereum foundation. Furthermore, we generalize our attack in a nontrivial way to the higher-degree variant of the Legendre PRF and we point out a large class of weak keys for this construction. Lastly, we provide the first security analysis of two additional generalizations of the Legendre PRF originally proposed by Damgård in the PRG setting, namely the Jacobi PRF and the power residue PRF.
Lightweight AEAD and Hashing using the Sparkle Permutation Family
We introduce the Sparkle family of permutations operating on 256, 384 and 512 bits. These are combined with the Beetle mode to construct a family of authenticated ciphers, Schwaemm, with security levels ranging from 120 to 250 bits. We also use them to build new sponge-based hash functions, Esch256 and Esch384. Our permutations are among those with the lowest footprint in software, without sacrificing throughput. These properties are allowed by our use of an ARX component (the Alzette S-box) as well as a carefully chosen number of rounds. The corresponding analysis is enabled by the long trail strategy which gives us the tools we need to efficiently bound the probability of all the differential and linear trails for an arbitrary number of rounds. We also present a new application of this approach where the only trails considered are those mapping the rate to the outer part of the internal state, such trails being the only relevant trails for instance in a differential collision attack. To further decrease the number of rounds without compromising security, we modify the message injection in the classical sponge construction to break the alignment between the rate and our S-box layer.
Alzette: a 64-bit ARX-box (feat. CRAX and TRAX) 📺
S-boxes are the only source of non-linearity in many symmetric cryptographic primitives. While they are often defined as being functions operating on a small space, some recent designs propose the use of much larger ones (e.g., 32 bits). In this context, an S-box is then defined as a subfunction whose cryptographic properties can be estimated precisely. In this paper, we present a 64-bit ARX-based S-box called Alzette which can be evaluated in constant time using only 12 instructions on modern CPUs. Its parallel application can also leverage vector (SIMD) instructions. One iteration of Alzette has differential and linear properties comparable to those of the AES S-box, while two iterations are at least as secure as the AES super S-box. Since the state size is much larger than the typical 4 or 8 bits, the study of the relevant cryptographic properties of Alzette is not trivial. We further discuss how such wide S-boxes could be used to construct round functions of 64-, 128- and 256-bit (tweakable) block ciphers with good cryptographic properties that are guaranteed even in the related-tweak setting. We use these structures to design a very lightweight 64-bit block cipher (CRAX) which outerperforms SPECK-64/128 for short messages on micro-controllers, and a 256-bit tweakable block cipher (TRAX) which can be used to obtain strong security guarantees against powerful adversaries (nonce misuse, quantum attacks).
Attacks and Countermeasures for White-box Designs
In traditional symmetric cryptography, the adversary has access only to the inputs and outputs of a cryptographic primitive. In the white-box model the adversary is given full access to the implementation. He can use both static and dynamic analysis as well as fault analysis in order to break the cryptosystem, e.g. to extract the embedded secret key. Implementations secure in such model have many applications in industry. However, creating such implementations turns out to be a very challenging if not an impossible task.Recently, Bos et al.  proposed a generic attack on white-box primitives called differential computation analysis (DCA). This attack was applied to many white-box implementations both from academia and industry. The attack comes from the area of side-channel analysis and the most common method protecting against such attacks is masking, which in turn is a form of secret sharing. In this paper we present multiple generic attacks against masked white-box implementations. We use the term “masking” in a very broad sense. As a result, we deduce new constraints that any secure white-box implementation must satisfy.Based on the new constraints, we develop a general method for protecting white-box implementations. We split the protection into two independent components: value hiding and structure hiding. Value hiding must provide protection against passive DCA-style attacks that rely on analysis of computation traces. Structure hiding must provide protection against circuit analysis attacks. In this paper we focus on developing the value hiding component. It includes protection against the DCA attack by Bos et al. and protection against a new attack called algebraic attack.We present a provably secure first-order protection against the new algebraic attack. The protection is based on small gadgets implementing secure masked XOR and AND operations. Furthermore, we give a proof of compositional security allowing to freely combine secure gadgets. We derive concrete security bounds for circuits built using our construction.
Exponential S-Boxes: a Link Between the S-Boxes of BelT and Kuznyechik/Streebog
The block cipher Kuznyechik and the hash function Streebog were recently standardized by the Russian Federation. These primitives use a common 8-bit S-Box, denoted