International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Paper: Differential Cryptanalysis in Stream Ciphers

Eli Biham
Orr Dunkelman
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Abstract: In this paper we present a general framework for the application of the ideas of differential cryptanalysis to stream ciphers. We demonstrate that some differences in the key (or the initial state or the plaintext) are likely to cause predicted differences in the key stream or in the internal state. These stream differences can then be used to analyze the internal state of the cipher and retrieve it efficiently. We apply our proposed ideas to stream ciphers of various designs, e.g., regularly clocked LFSRs, irregularly clocked LFSRs such as A5/1, and permutation-based stream ciphers such as RC4.
  title={Differential Cryptanalysis in Stream Ciphers},
  booktitle={IACR Eprint archive},
  keywords={secret-key cryptography / Differential cryptanalysis, Stream ciphers, RC4, A5/1},
  note={ 13671 received 6 Jun 2007},
  author={Eli Biham and Orr Dunkelman},