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Lightweight MACs from Universal Hash Functions

Abstract : Lightweight cryptography is a topic of growing importance, with the goal to secure the communication of low-end devices that are not powerful enough to use conventional cryptography. There have been many recent proposals of lightweight block ciphers, but comparatively few results on lightweight Message Authentication Codes (MACs). Therefore, this paper focuses on lightweight MACs. We review some existing constructions, and revisit the choices made in mainstream MACs with a focus on lightweight cryptography. We consider MACs based on universal hash functions, because they offer information theoretic security , can be implemented efficiently and are widely used in conventional cryptography. However, many constructions used in practice (such as GMAC or Poly1305-AES) follow the Wegman-Carter-Shoup construction , which is only secure up to 2 64 queries with a 128-bit state. We point out that there are simple solutions to reach security beyond the birthday bound, and we propose a concrete instantiation, MAC611, reaching 61-bit security with a 61-bit universal hash function. We wrote an optimized implementation on two ARM micro-controllers, and we obtain very good performances on the Cortex-M4, at only 3.7 c/B for long messages, and less than one thousand cycles for short messages.
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https://hal.inria.fr/hal-02424904
Contributor : Gaëtan Leurent <>
Submitted on : Saturday, December 28, 2019 - 8:31:25 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, January 7, 2021 - 3:38:03 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Sunday, March 29, 2020 - 1:15:50 PM

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  • HAL Id : hal-02424904, version 1

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Sébastien Duval, Gaëtan Leurent. Lightweight MACs from Universal Hash Functions. CARDIS 2019 - 18th Smart Card Research and Advanced Application Conference, Nov 2019, Prague, Czech Republic. ⟨hal-02424904⟩

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