Cryptography is the practice and study of logical means used to achieve information confidentiality, integrity and authenticity. It covers, among other things, encryption (making some data unreadable except for those who know a given secret element, called a key), data hashing (in particular for ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms

12
votes
1answer
2k views

TrueCrypt, Master password possible?

I recently was talking with somebody, and they said something along the lines of TrueCrypt having a "master key" password that certain authorities have. Now, from what I know about how TrueCrypt ...
12
votes
1answer
412 views

What are the problems with encrypted but unsigned data?

In another question's answer, D.W. wrote: Make sure there is authenticity protection for the encrypted data (e.g., encrypt and then sign/MAC): you will need both confidentiality and authenticity ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

MS-SQL Password Storage

What would be your recommendation for replacement of an MD5 hash approach to password storage within an MS-SQL database be?
12
votes
1answer
759 views

XKCD #936: under what assumptions is 1000 guesses/second over a network plausible?

In XKCD #936, a rate of 1000 password guesses/second is proposed as a "plausible attack on a weak remote web service". Under what assumptions is this rate plausible? It seems much too high to me. I ...
12
votes
4answers
21k views

Recommendations for a Certificate Management tool for Linux [closed]

A client is looking to roll out OpenVPN to all its mobile employees and will use certificates on both the server and all clients. This creates a new challenge to manage all these certificates and ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Describe an example of indistinguishability obfuscation or functional encryption

As described in Perfecting the Art of Sensible Nonsense, a major breakthrough in cryptography research was published in the summer of 2013: Candidate Indistinguishability Obfuscation and Functional ...
12
votes
1answer
256 views

Securing a prediction about a future event

I want to make a prediction about a future event, but only reveal that prediction after the event occurs lest knowledge of my prediction affect the outcome. For example, suppose Alice predicts that ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

Why do PGP master keys only have a single subkey, and tie certification with signing by default?

After learning more about PGP subkeys and how to split apart the roles of (S)igning, (E)ncryption, (A)uthentication and (C)ertification, I discovered that in most cases(?) a default master key has a ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Question about dictionary attacks on GnuPG symmetric encryption

They say algorithms like AES can't practically be broken given a long enough key length (> 128 bits). If I use GnuPG to encrypt a file using AES: gpg -c --cipher-algo AES secretfile it asks me for a ...
12
votes
4answers
999 views

Key management in cloud datacenters

In terms of infrastructure, how do Cloud providers (organizations providing SaaS, PaaS, or IaaS via the cloud) manage keys and cryptography? From my understanding, "private" datacenters tend to ...
12
votes
1answer
424 views

What did Blackberry do wrong?

The NIST defines a vulnerability in RIM Blackberry encryption discovered last October. Apparently, Blackberry's flavour of PBKDF2 was weak. They say: The offline backup mechanism in Research In ...
11
votes
7answers
2k views

Prevent denial of service attacks against slow hashing functions?

I've been thinking about bcrypt recently, and what I wonder is if there's a way to deal with the inherent (D)DoS problems with slow hashing functions. Namely, if I set up bcrypt so my machine takes ...
11
votes
5answers
3k views

Do mobile OS's provide crypto-quality randomness?

Which mobile OS's provide a primitive to generate crypto-quality randomness that applications can use? On desktop systems, these features are pervasive. Unix provides /dev/urandom. Windows provides ...
11
votes
5answers
655 views

Security of using passwords or even passphrases to encrypt files

Is it ever appropriate to use real-world passwords to encrypt files to be sent via unsecure means. By real world, I mean a password that is memorable and memorisable by a mere person? I am implying ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Using computer random number generators to produce keys, it is secure?

Does generating an encryption key using the random number generator on one's computer present a security risk? If so how might that risk be mitigated, specifically when generating RSA key pairs in ...
11
votes
5answers
4k views

What is the benefit with using encrypted RAM Memory?

I sometimes hear that encryption is used for the RAM Memory, but I don't really understand why this is needed. Why is RAM Memory needed to be encrypted? and is this done by the hardware, the ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

What kinds of SSL certificates are usable for encryption?

I know that Verizon SSL certificates cost close to $600. There are couple of cheap alternatives, but I never really understood why Verizon does not offer such certificates. Look for RapidSSL at ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Why isn't OCSP required by default in browsers?

According to the following screenshot, taken from firefox-3.6.17-1.fc14.i686, Firefox has an option to fail closed when unable to connect to OCSP servers. Can someone please explain why this isn't ...
11
votes
3answers
330 views

Can RSA keys be swapped?

On a theoretical level, is there anything inherently different about public vs private keys? During RSA key generation there are two keys generated, key A and key B. Key A is private and Key B is ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there really functioning quantum computers?

I saw this video on youtube on quantum computing. It says that a company called dwavesys has already made commercially available quantum computer. I checked on the website and it exists. I thought ...
11
votes
7answers
4k views

Why can an encrypted private key be brute forced?

When using SSH keys to authenticate to a server for remote access, why is it possible to devise the true key and therefore the passphrase from an encrypted private key, without checking each guess of ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Native rsync protocol security

Is the native rsync protocol (port 873) secure? Does it encrypt data or credentials? I'm planning on using rsync to store encrypted files in the cloud, I'm wondering whatever the password is ...
11
votes
2answers
3k views

Which cipher suites with AES cipher provide forward secrecy?

Does standard AES with RSA (reported by Opera as TLS v1.0 256 bit AES (1024 bit RSA/SHA)) provide perfect forward secrecy? Which SSL3.0 and TLS1.0 ciphers do provide forward secrecy? Which ciphers ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

How to exchange RSA public keys safely between two parties?

How to exchange RSA public keys safely between two parties via internet?
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there a length beyond which increasing password length provides no additional security?

Assuming that the password is stored hashed and salted, and that it is a string of random characters, is there a point where adding to password length doesn't add security? Since the hash will have a ...
11
votes
1answer
8k views

4096 bit RSA encryption keys vs 2048

Where do 4096 bit RSA keys for SSL certs currently stand in terms of things like CA support, browser support, etc? In the overall scheme of things is the increased security worth the risk of 4096 bit ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Multiple CAs signing a single Cert/CSR?

Just saw this suggested on Slashdot So I've seen quite a few people wanting a switch to self-signed certs (who IMO mostly don't understand what making that secure actually involves), and an idea ...
11
votes
1answer
168 views

Is there an organization that reviews/approves crypto implementations?

As I understand it, NIST approves crypto algorithms but doesn't cover specific implementations. I think I've read about IEEE approving hardware implementations of, e.g. AES, but I can't think of any ...
11
votes
1answer
823 views

Any risk in using the same salt for several hashes on a user?

Right now I'm storing a salt and password_hash on the users table (pretty standard stuff). The need arose to get a secure hash of another field for a user. Is there any risk in reusing the same salt ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

Additional security of keyfile on top of a master password for KeePass

I use KeePass + Dropbox to manage and synchronize my passwords across my devices. This system works really great and I trust KeePass' security model. However my biggest remaining concern is the ...
11
votes
0answers
478 views

Strength and length of Symmetric vs Asymmetric keys [duplicate]

There are many questions surrounding the differences between symmetric and asymmetric encryption keys. I think I've read them all at this point. But I'm still left wondering: Why does a "secure" ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

Whenever an unhandled exception somehow makes it into production, is it safe, viable, etc. to print an encrypted stack trace to the end user?

Whenever an unhandled exception makes it into production somehow - whatever the reason - there's generally an option (especially with .NET programs) to print out a stack trace to the end user before ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Security of SHA256 and Bitcoins

The Bitcoin network use SHA256 as a core component to it's design. I'm no expert on cryptography, but it seems to me it usually is only a matter of time before security vulnerabilities are discovered ...
10
votes
4answers
512 views

How can I audit which type of Block Mode encryption is being used when no source code is available?

Given that there are clear advantages to using some block modes of encryption over another, and I would like to ensure that all software used in the enterprise uses a certain "level" of security I'd ...
10
votes
3answers
4k views

How does an SSL server prove its identity?

This document says that a challenge response authentication proves the servers identity. But is a man in the middle attack still possible if the client does not verify domain name ? Please help me ...
10
votes
6answers
428 views

Should we configure all devices to never request SSL 2.0, and reject it if offered?

In an effort to reduce man in the middle attacks, when will it be (or was it) an industry accepted practice to reject SSL 2.0 connections on the client and server side? Is configuring this on a proxy ...
10
votes
8answers
1k views

Double encryption with home brew algorithm

Everyone says that home brew encryption is not a good idea because one day the algorithm will be known to attacker which sounds reasonable. So that seems it's main problem, on the other hand known ...
10
votes
3answers
10k views

What is the DUKPT Key Derivation Function?

I'm tasked with decrypting ciphertext acquired from an encrypted card reader. The card reader utilizes DUKPT(derived unique key per transaction) scheme and 3DES encryption. I don't have a problem with ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

At what point does adding more iterations to PBKDF2 provide no extra security?

If my true passphrase is used only to generate a hash which is used as the cipher's actual key, doesn't that mean it's possible to try and brute force the cipher itself? I know it would take an ...
10
votes
3answers
544 views

has scrypt withstood the test of time?

I've always heard that scrypt was better than bcrpyt... because of memory causing GPU a very difficult time to crack. However, the notion always was that scrypt hadn't been tested, it was kind of a ...
10
votes
3answers
14k views

SSL handshake failure modes

In SSL if the handshake is not succesful, does it always end with a handshake alert? Or are there other ways to finish the SSL connection (acceptable by standard). I am asking this, because in an ...
10
votes
5answers
14k views

What does “key with length of x bits” mean?

I'd like to know what it means to say "the cryptosystem C uses keys with a length of x bits". I do not understand what the bits length means... doesn't it depend on the encoding? The same word encodes ...
10
votes
2answers
523 views

Forward secrecy for kids

In the Scouts, it is popular to use secret codes to write messages (which are simple ciphers). I want to introduce Forward secrecy to the kids so they can use it with these ciphers. So, if the ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

How does a weakness in a random number generator lead to a compromise of the entire cryptographic process?

In the news, there are several articles (here, here, and the technical point of view) which have to do with a weakness in a random number generator. The question is somewhat twofold. What symptoms do ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Cryptographic Security of Dynamically Generated, Non-Random Salts

So when it comes to security, when I have an idea that seems good, but no one else seems to be doing, I try to assume that I'm overlooking something obvious or otherwise significant. This is one such ...
10
votes
2answers
352 views

How much security is compromised if we accept other characters as login (other than the original password)?

I've just realised that facebook accepts 3 forms of a password: Source: Facebook actually accepts three forms of your password: Your original password. Your original password with the ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

How does the padding scheme impact the security of encryption

After digging a little deeper into cryptography I am wondering what impact the different padding schemes do have an the security of an encryption algorithm. Lets take AES-128 in CBC mode as an ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Location to store an encryption key

I'm building a secure system which stores messages on a server in a Postgresql database. The messages are stored encrypted with PHP's openssl_encrypt() function with the AES-256-CBC method. At the ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

What was SSL 1.0?

What was SSL 1.0? SSL 2.0 and 3.0 are well-known and well-documented. But what did the SSL 1.0 protocol look like? Wikipedia says there was a SSL 1.0 but doesn't say anything about how it worked. ...
10
votes
2answers
836 views

In the recent DKIM vulnerability, how did someone determine key length by looking at headers?

Having read this recent article : Wired-DKIM vulnerability, I have a couple of questions. How can one determine the key length that is being used simply by looking at the headers ? And I'm assuming ...