Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2019/439

A Comprehensive Study of Deep Learning for Side-Channel Analysis

Lo´c Masure and CÚcile Dumas and Emmanuel Prouff

Abstract: In Side Channel Analysis, masking is known to be a reliable and robust counter-measure. Recently, several papers have focused on the application of the Deep Learning (DL) theory to improve the efficiency of side channel attacks against implementations protected with this approach. Even if these seminal works have demonstrated the practical interest of DL in the side-channel context, they did not argue on their theoretical soundness nor quantify their efficiency, especially with respect to the optimality bounds published so far in the literature. This paper aims at addressing this question of optimality, in particular when masking is applied. We argue that minimizing the Negative Log Likelihood during the training of Deep Learning models is actually asymptotically equivalent to maximizing a lower bound of the mutual information between the observations and the target secret chunk, or equivalently to minimizing an upper bound on underlying side-channel efficiency. Also, we argue that training a Deep Neural Networks consists in finding the parameters that maximize the Perceived Information introduced by Renauld et al. at EUROCRYPT 2011. These theoretical results allowed us to formally study the impact of masking counter-measures against Deep Learning based Side Channel attacks. In particular, and as expected, we verified, both on simulations and on experimental traces, that Boolean masking is sound against such a class of Side Channel attacks.

Category / Keywords: Side Channel Analysis, Profiling Attacks, Machine Learning, Deep Learning, Masking, Mutual Information, Perceived Information, Negative Log Likelihood, Cross Entropy

Date: received 30 Apr 2019, last revised 3 May 2019

Contact author: loic masure at cea fr,cecile dumas@cea fr,e prouff@gmail com

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20190503:140013 (All versions of this report)

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