Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2021/1645

Sequential Indifferentiability of Confusion-Diffusion Networks

Qi Da and Shanjie Xu and Chun Guo

Abstract: A large proportion of modern symmetric cryptographic building blocks are designed using the Substitution-Permutation Networks (SPNs), or more generally, Shannon's confusion-diffusion paradigm. To justify its theoretical soundness, Dodis et al. (EUROCRYPT 2016) recently introduced the theoretical model of confusion-diffusion networks, which may be viewed as keyless SPNs using random permutations as S-boxes and combinatorial primitives as permutation layers, and established provable security in the plain indifferentiability framework of Maurer, Renner, and Holenstein (TCC 2004).

We extend this work and consider Non-Linear Confusion-Diffusion Networks (NLCDNs), i.e., networks using non-linear permutation layers, in weaker indifferentiability settings. As the main result, we prove that 3-round NLCDNs achieve the notion of sequential indifferentiability of Mandal et al. (TCC 2012). We also exhibit an attack against 2-round NLCDNs, which shows the tightness of our positive result on 3 rounds. It implies correlation intractability of 3-round NLCDNs, a notion strongly related to known-key security of block ciphers and secure hash functions. Our results provide additional insights on understanding the complexity for known-key security, as well as using confusion-diffusion paradigm for designing cryptographic hash functions.

Category / Keywords: secret-key cryptography / Block ciphers, substitution-permutation networks, confusion-diffusion, indifferentiability, correlation intractability

Original Publication (in the same form): Indocrypt 2021

Date: received 16 Dec 2021, last revised 17 Dec 2021

Contact author: chun guo sc at gmail com

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20211217:143919 (All versions of this report)

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