Atom: A Stream Cipher with Double Key Filter
It has been common knowledge that for a stream cipher to be secure against generic TMD tradeoff attacks, the size of its internal state in bits needs to be at least twice the size of the length of its secret key. In FSE 2015, Armknecht and Mikhalev however proposed the stream cipher Sprout with a Grain-like architecture, whose internal state was equal in size with its secret key and yet resistant against TMD attacks. Although Sprout had other weaknesses, it germinated a sequence of stream cipher designs like Lizard and Plantlet with short internal states. Both these designs have had cryptanalytic results reported against them. In this paper, we propose the stream cipher Atom that has an internal state of 159 bits and offers a security of 128 bits. Atom uses two key filters simultaneously to thwart certain cryptanalytic attacks that have been recently reported against keystream generators. In addition, we found that our design is one of the smallest stream ciphers that offers this security level, and we prove in this paper that Atom resists all the attacks that have been proposed against stream ciphers so far in literature. On the face of it, Atom also builds on the basic structure of the Grain family of stream ciphers. However, we try to prove that by including the additional key filter in the architecture of Atom we can make it immune to all cryptanalytic advances proposed against stream ciphers in recent cryptographic literature.
Orthros: A Low-Latency PRF
We present Orthros, a 128-bit block pseudorandom function. It is designed with primary focus on latency of fully unrolled circuits. For this purpose, we adopt a parallel structure comprising two keyed permutations. The round function of each permutation is similar to Midori, a low-energy block cipher, however we thoroughly revise it to reduce latency, and introduce different rounds to significantly improve cryptographic strength in a small number of rounds. We provide a comprehensive, dedicated security analysis. For hardware implementation, Orthros achieves the lowest latency among the state-of-the-art low-latency primitives. For example, using the STM 90nm library, Orthros achieves a minimum latency of around 2.4 ns, while other constructions like PRINCE, Midori-128 and QARMA9-128- σ0 achieve 2.56 ns, 4.10 ns, 4.38 ns respectively.
Rocca: An Efficient AES-based Encryption Scheme for Beyond 5G
In this paper, we present an AES-based authenticated-encryption with associated-data scheme called Rocca, with the purpose to reach the requirements on the speed and security in 6G systems. To achieve ultra-fast software implementations, the basic design strategy is to take full advantage of the AES-NI and SIMD instructions as that of the AEGIS family and Tiaoxin-346. Although Jean and Nikolić have generalized the way to construct efficient round functions using only one round of AES (aesenc) and 128-bit XOR operation and have found several efficient candidates, there still seems to exist potential to further improve it regarding speed and state size. In order to minimize the critical path of one round, we remove the case of applying both aesenc and XOR in a cascade way for one round. By introducing a cost-free block permutation in the round function, we are able to search for candidates in a larger space without sacrificing the performance. Consequently, we obtain more efficient constructions with a smaller state size than candidates by Jean and Nikolić. Based on the newly-discovered round function, we carefully design the corresponding AEAD scheme with 256-bit security by taking several reported attacks on the AEGIS family and Tiaxion-346 into account. Our AEAD scheme can reach 138Gbps which is 4 times faster than the AEAD scheme of SNOW-V. Rocca is also much faster than other efficient schemes with 256-bit key length, e.g. AEGIS-256 and AES-256-GCM. As far as we know, Rocca is the first dedicated cryptographic algorithm targeting 6 systems, i.e., 256-bit key length and the speed of more than 100 Gbps.
Weak Keys in Reduced AEGIS and Tiaoxin
AEGIS-128 and Tiaoxin-346 (Tiaoxin for short) are two AES-based primitives submitted to the CAESAR competition. Among them, AEGIS-128 has been selected in the final portfolio for high-performance applications, while Tiaoxin is a third-round candidate. Although both primitives adopt a stream cipher based design, they are quite different from the well-known bit-oriented stream ciphers like Trivium and the Grain family. Their common feature consists in the round update function, where the state is divided into several 128-bit words and each word has the option to pass through an AES round or not. During the 6-year CAESAR competition, it is surprising that for both primitives there is no third-party cryptanalysis of the initialization phase. Due to the similarities in both primitives, we are motivated to investigate whether there is a common way to evaluate the security of their initialization phases. Our technical contribution is to write the expressions of the internal states in terms of the nonce and the key by treating a 128-bit word as a unit and then carefully study how to simplify these expressions by adding proper conditions. As a result, we find that there are several groups of weak keys with 296 keys each in 5-round AEGIS-128 and 8-round Tiaoxin, which allows us to construct integral distinguishers with time complexity 232 and data complexity 232. Based on the distinguisher, the time complexity to recover the weak key is 272 for 5-round AEGIS-128. However, the weak key recovery attack on 8-round Tiaoxin will require the usage of a weak constant occurring with probability 2−32. All the attacks reach half of the total number of initialization rounds. We expect that this work can advance the understanding of the designs similar to AEGIS and Tiaoxin.