Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2019/1276

Two PQ Signature Use-cases: Non-issues, challenges and potential solutions.

Panos Kampanakis and Dimitrios Sikeridis

Abstract: The recent advances and attention to quantum computing have raised serious security concerns among IT professionals. The ability of a quantum computer to efficiently solve (elliptic curve) discrete logarithm, and integer factorization problems poses a threat to current public key exchange, encryption, and digital signature schemes.

Consequently, in 2016 NIST initiated an open call for quantum-resistant crypto algorithms. This process, currently in its second round, has yielded nine signature algorithms for possible standardization. In this work, we are evaluating two post-quantum signature use-cases and analyze the signature schemes that seem most appropriate for them. We first consider Hash-Based Signatures for software signing and secure boot. We propose suitable parameters and show that their acceptable performance makes them good candidates for image signing. We then evaluate NIST candidate post-quantum signatures for TLS 1.3. We show that Dilithium and Falcon are the best available options but come with an impact on TLS performance. Finally, we present challenges and potential solutions introduced by these algorithms.

Category / Keywords: cryptographic protocols / post-quantum signatures, post-quantum image signing, post-quantum authentication

Date: received 3 Nov 2019, last revised 27 Apr 2021

Contact author: pkampana at cisco com, dsike at unm edu

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Note: Presented at the 7th ETSI/IQC Quantum Safe Cryptography Workshop 2019. Manuscript received Nov 3, 2019. Revised Nov 11, 2019 to include thoughts on OCSP and SCT signatures and RSA2048 performance. Revised Feb 27, 2020 to include reference to [40] in Section 4. Revised Dec 21, 2020 to include reference to [23] in Section 3.2. Revised Apr 28, 2021 to include reference to [24] in Section 3.2.

Version: 20210428:042401 (All versions of this report)

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