Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2005/397

Enhancing the MD-Strengthening and Designing Scalable Families of One-Way Hash Algorithms

Neil Kauer and Tony Suarez and Yuliang Zheng

Abstract: One-way hash algorithms are an indispensable tool in data security. Over the last decade or so a number of one-way hash algorithms have been designed and many of them have been used in numerous applications. Recent progress in cryptanalytic attacks on one-way hash algorithms by Wang and co-workers, however, has brought up the urgency of research into new and more secure algorithms. The goal of this paper is two-folded. On one hand we propose a simple technique to affix authentication tags to messages prior to being hashed by an iterative one-way hash algorithm with the aim of increasing the overall security of the algorithm against cryptanalytic attacks. One the other hand we advocate the importance of a system oriented approach towards the design and deployment of new families of one-way hash algorithms that support greater scalability and facilitate migration to newer member algorithms upon the compromise of deployed ones. We base our observations on a common sense premise that there is no specific one-way hash algorithm can remain secure forever and it will eventually be broken by a cryptanalytic attack faster than exhaustive research.

Category / Keywords: foundations / One-way hashing

Publication Info: Presented at NIST Hash Workshop 10/31-11/01/2005

Date: received 3 Nov 2005

Contact author: yzheng at uncc edu

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Version: 20051105:223602 (All versions of this report)

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