Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2014/008

A Theoretical Study of Kolmogorov-Smirnov Distinguishers: Side-Channel Analysis vs. Differential Cryptanalysis

Annelie Heuser and Sylvain Guilley and Olivier Rioul

Abstract: In this paper, we carry out a detailed mathematical study of two theoretical distinguishers based on the Kolmogorov-Smirnov (KS) distance. This includes a proof of soundness and the derivation of closed-form expressions, which can be split into two factors: one depending only on the noise and the other on the confusion coefficient of Fei, Luo and Ding. This allows one to have a deeper understanding of the relative influences of the signal-to-noise ratio and the confusion coefficient on the distinguisher’s performance. Moreover, one is able to directly compare distinguishers based on their closed-form expressions instead of using evaluation metric that might obscure the actual performance and favor one distinguisher over the other. Furthermore, we formalize the link between the confusion coefficient and differential cryptanalysis, which shows that the stronger an S-box is resistant to differential attacks the weaker it is against side-channel attacks, and vice versa.

Category / Keywords: applications / Side-channel distinguisher, Confusion coefficient, Kolmogorov-Smirnov analysis, Closed-form expressions, S-Box differential uniformity

Original Publication (in the same form): COSADE 2014

Date: received 4 Jan 2014, last revised 1 Apr 2014

Contact author: annelie heuser at telecom-paristech fr

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20140401:121125 (All versions of this report)

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