Paper 2019/185

Zero-Correlation Attacks on Tweakable Block Ciphers with Linear Tweakey Expansion

Ralph Ankele, Christoph Dobraunig, Jian Guo, Eran Lambooij, Gregor Leander, and Yosuke Todo


The design and analysis of dedicated tweakable block ciphers is a quite recent and very active research field that provides an ongoing stream of new insights. For instance, results of Kranz, Leander, and Wiemer from FSE 2017 show that the addition of a tweak using a linear tweak schedule does not introduce new linear characteristics. In this paper, we consider --- to the best of our knowledge --- for the first time the effect of the tweak on zero-correlation linear cryptanalysis for ciphers that have a linear tweak schedule. It turns out that the tweak can often be used to get zero-correlation linear hulls covering more rounds compared to just searching zero-correlation linear hulls on the data-path of a cipher. Moreover, this also implies the existence of integral distinguishers on the same number of rounds. We have applied our technique on round reduced versions of QARMA, MANTIS, and Skinny. As a result, we can present --- to the best of our knowledge --- the best attack (with respect to number of rounds) on a round-reduced variant of QARMA.

Note: Fix some typos

Available format(s)
Secret-key cryptography
Publication info
Published by the IACR in FSE 2019
Symmetric-key cryptographytweakable block cipherszero-correlationintegral cryptanalysisQarmaMantisSkinny
Contact author(s)
ralph ankele 2015 @ live rhul ac uk
christoph dobraunig @ iaik tugraz at
guojian @ ntu edu sg
eranlambooij @ gmail com
Gregor Leander @ rub de
todo yosuke @ lab ntt co jp
ysktodo @ gmail com
2019-03-11: revised
2019-02-26: received
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Creative Commons Attribution


      author = {Ralph Ankele and Christoph Dobraunig and Jian Guo and Eran Lambooij and Gregor Leander and Yosuke Todo},
      title = {Zero-Correlation Attacks on Tweakable Block Ciphers with Linear Tweakey Expansion},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2019/185},
      year = {2019},
      note = {\url{}},
      url = {}
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