Unformatted text preview: designed by International Business Machines (IBM), as a federal Data Encryption Standard (DES). Marty Hellman and I criticized the proposal on the ground that its key was too small, but manufacturers were gearing up to support the proposed standard and our criticism was seen by many as an attempt to disrupt the standards-making process to the advantage of our own work. Public key cryptography in its turn was attacked, in sales literature  and technical papers [849,1159] alike, more as though it were a competing product than a recent research discovery. This, however, did not deter the NSA from claiming its share of the credit. Its director, in the words of the Encyclopedia Britannica , pointed out that “two-key cryptography had been discovered at the agency a decade earlier,” although no evidence for this claim was ever offered publicly. In the real world, public-key algorithms are not a substitute for symmetric algorithms. They are not used to encrypt messages; they are used to encrypt keys. There are two reasons for this: 1. Public-key algorithms are slow. Symmetric algorithms are generally at least 1000 times faster than public-key algorithms. Yes, computers are getting faster and faster, and in 15 years computers will be able to do public-key cryptography at speeds comparable to symmetric cryptography today. But bandwidth requirements are also increasing, and there will always be the need to encrypt data faster than public-key cryptography can manage. 2. Public-key cryptosystems are vulnerable to chosen-plaintext attacks. If C = E(P), when P is one plaintext out of a set of n possible plaintexts, then a cryptanalyst only has to encrypt all n possible plaintexts and compare the results with C (remember, the encryption key is public). He won’t be able to recover the decryption key this way, but he will be able to determine P. Previous Table of Contents Next Products | Contact Us | About Us | Privacy | Ad Info | Home Use of this site is subject to certain Terms & Conditions, Copyright © 1996-2000 EarthWeb I...
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- Fall '10
- Cryptography, Bruce Schneier, Applied Cryptography, EarthWeb, Search Search Tips