Paper 2015/508

Probabilistic Signature Based Framework for Differential Fault Analysis of Stream Ciphers

Santanu Sarkar, Prakash Dey, Avishek Adhikari, and Subhamoy Maitra


Differential Fault Attack (DFA) has received serious attention in cryptographic literature and very recently such attacks have been mounted against several popular stream ciphers for example Grain v1, MICKEY 2.0 and Trivium, that are parts of the eStream hardware profile. The basic idea of the fault attacks consider injection of faults and the most general set-up should consider faults at random location and random time. Then one should identify the exact location and the exact timing of the fault (as well as multi bit faults) with the help of fault signatures. In this paper we consider this most general set-up and solve the problem of fault attack under a general framework, where probabilistic signatures are exploited. Our ideas subsume all the existing DFAs against the Grain family, MICKEY 2.0 and Trivium. In the process we provide improved fault attacks for all the versions of Grain family and also for MICKEY 2.0 (the attacks against Trivium are already quite optimal and thus there is not much scope to improve). Our generalized method can also take care of the cases where certain parts of the keystream bits are missing for authentication purpose. In particular, we show that the unsolved problem of identifying the faults in random time for Grain 128a can be solved in this manner. Our techniques can easily be applied to mount fault attack on any stream cipher of similar kind.

Available format(s)
Secret-key cryptography
Publication info
Preprint. MINOR revision.
Differential AttackFault AttackGrain FamilyMICKEY 2.0Probabilistic SignaturesStream ciphers.
Contact author(s)
avishek adh @ gmail com
2015-05-27: received
Short URL
Creative Commons Attribution


      author = {Santanu Sarkar and Prakash Dey and Avishek Adhikari and Subhamoy Maitra},
      title = {Probabilistic Signature Based Framework for Differential Fault Analysis of Stream Ciphers},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2015/508},
      year = {2015},
      note = {\url{}},
      url = {}
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