International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Phuong Pham


Improved Meet-in-the-Middle Nostradamus Attacks on AES-like Hashing
The Nostradamus attack was originally proposed as a security vulnerability for a hash function by Kelsey and Kohno at EUROCRYPT 2006. It requires the attacker to commit to a hash value y of an iterated hash function H. Subsequently, upon being provided with a message prefix P, the adversary’s task is to identify a suffix S such that H(P∥S) equals y. Kelsey and Kohno demonstrated a herding attack requiring O(√n · 22n/3) evaluations of the compression function of H, where n represents the output and state size of the hash, placing this attack between preimage attacks and collision searches in terms of complexity. At ASIACRYPT 2022, Benedikt et al. transform Kelsey and Kohno’s attack into a quantum variant, decreasing the time complexity from O(√n · 22n/3) to O( 3√n · 23n/7). At ToSC 2023, Zhang et al. proposed the first dedicated Nostradamus attack on AES-like hashing in both classical and quantum settings. In this paper, we have made revisions to the multi-target technique incorporated into the meet-in-the-middle automatic search framework. This modification leads to a decrease in time complexity during the online linking phase, effectively reducing the overall attack time complexity in both classical and quantum scenarios. Specifically, we can achieve more rounds in the classical setting and reduce the time complexity for the same round in the quantum setting.
Quantum Attacks on Hash Constructions with Low Quantum Random Access Memory
At ASIACRYPT 2022, Benedikt, Fischlin, and Huppert proposed the quantum herding attacks on iterative hash functions for the first time. Their attack needs exponential quantum random access memory (qRAM), more precisely {$2^{0.43n}$} quantum accessible classical memory (QRACM). As the existence of large qRAM is questionable, Benedikt et al. leave an open question on building low-qRAM quantum herding attacks. In this paper, we answer this open question by building a quantum herding attack, where the time complexity is slightly increased from Benedikt et al.'s $2^{0.43n}$ to ours $2^{0.46n}$, but {it does not need qRAM anymore (abbreviated as no-qRAM)}. Besides, we also introduce various low-qRAM {or no-qRAM} quantum attacks on hash concatenation combiner, hash XOR combiner, Hash-Twice, and Zipper hash functions.
Triangulating Rebound Attack on AES-like Hashing 📺
Rebound attack was introduced by Mendel et al. at FSE~2009 to fulfill a heavy middle round of a differential path for free, utilizing the degree of freedom from states. The inbound phase was extended to 2 rounds by Super-Sbox technique invented by Lamberger et al. at ASIACRYPT~2009 and Gilbert and Peyrin at FSE~2010. In ASIACRYPT~2010, Sasaki et al. further reduced the requirement of memory by introducing the non-full-active Super-Sbox. In this paper, we further develop this line of research by introducing Super-Inbound, which is able to connect multiple 1-round or 2-round (non-full-active) Super-Sbox inbound phases by utilizing fully the degrees of freedom from both states and key, yet without the use of large memory. This essentially extends the inbound phase by up to 3 rounds. We applied this technique to find classic or quantum collisions on several AES-like hash functions, and improved the attacked round number by 1 to 5 in targets including AES-128 and Skinny hashing modes, Saturnin-hash, and Gr{\o}stl-512. To demonstrate the correctness of our attacks, the semi-free-start collision on 6-round AES-128-MMO/MP with estimated time complexity $2^{24}$ in classical setting was implemented and an example pair was found instantly on a standard PC.


Xiaoyang Dong (3)
Jian Guo (2)
Shun Li (3)
Guoyan Zhang (1)
Tianyu Zhang (1)