Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2021/737

GIFT-COFB is Tightly Birthday Secure with Encryption Queries

Akiko Inoue and Kazuhiko Minematsu

Abstract: GIFT-COFB is a finalist of NIST Lightweight cryptography project that aims at standardizing authenticated encryption schemes for constrained devices. It is a block cipher-based scheme and comes with a provable security result. This paper studies the tightness of the provable security bounds of GIFT-COFB, which roughly tells that, if instantiated by a secure $n$-bit block cipher, we need $2^{n/2}$ encrypted blocks or $2^{n/2}/n$ decryption queries to break the scheme. This paper shows that the former condition is indeed tight, by presenting forgery attacks that work with $2^{n/2}$ encrypted blocks with single decryption query. This fills the missing spot of previous attacks presented by Khairallah, and confirms the tightness of the security bounds with respect to encryption. We remark that our attacks work independent of the underlying block cipher.

Category / Keywords: secret-key cryptography / Authenticated encryption, mode of operation, GIFT-COFB, birthday bound

Date: received 2 Jun 2021

Contact author: a_inoue at nec com, k-minematsu at nec com

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Version: 20210603:140229 (All versions of this report)

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