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Paper 2007/443

Template Attacks with a Power Model

Moulay Abdelaziz EL AABID, Sylvain GUILLEY, and Philippe HOOGVORST


This article analyses some properties of the \emph{template attack}. Examples come from attacks against an unprotected ASIC implementation of DES. The principal components analysis (PCA) is used to represent the templates in two dimensions. We give a physical interpretation of the templates PCA eigenvalues and eigenvectors. We show that the S-boxes are \emph{not} the target of template attacks. We point out that the efficiency of template attacks on unprotected implementations can be unleashed by using a power model. The most suitable power-model happens to be linked to the key schedule. This casts a new light on key schedule requirements for SCA resistance against a ``template'' attacker. The results are tailored for DES, because this symmetric block cipher is emblematic and is still promised a long life. Its key schedule is also remarkably simple, with cryptanalytic weaknesses,that paradoxically turn out to be a strength against SCA.

Available format(s)
Secret-key cryptography
Publication info
Published elsewhere. Unknown where it was published
Template attacksprincipal component analysisside-channel attack
Contact author(s)
elaabid @ enst fr
2007-12-06: last of 2 revisions
2007-12-05: received
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Creative Commons Attribution


      author = {Moulay Abdelaziz EL AABID and Sylvain GUILLEY and Philippe HOOGVORST},
      title = {Template Attacks with a Power Model},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2007/443},
      year = {2007},
      note = {\url{https://eprint.iacr.org/2007/443}},
      url = {https://eprint.iacr.org/2007/443}
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