International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Paper: Attacks on the DECT authentication mechanisms

Stefan Lucks
Andreas Schuler
Erik Tews
Ralf-Philipp Weinmann
Matthias Wenzel
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Abstract: Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications (DECT) is a standard for connecting cordless telephones to a fixed telecommunications network over a short range. The cryptographic algorithms used in DECT are not publicly available. In this paper we reveal one of the two algorithms used by DECT, the DECT Standard Authentication Algorithm (DSAA). We give a very detailed security analysis of the DSAA including some very effective attacks on the building blocks used for DSAA as well as a common implementation error that can practically lead to a total break of DECT security. We also present a low cost attack on the DECT protocol, which allows an attacker to impersonate a base station and therefore listen to and reroute all phone calls made by a handset.
  title={Attacks on the DECT authentication mechanisms},
  booktitle={IACR Eprint archive},
  keywords={secret-key cryptography / DECT, DSAA, cassable, cryptanalysis, block ciphers, linear cryptanalysis, differential cryptanalysis,},
  note={Accepted to CT-RSA 2009, updated paper 14291 received 16 Feb 2009},
  author={Stefan Lucks and Andreas Schuler and Erik Tews and Ralf-Philipp Weinmann and Matthias Wenzel},