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Researchers identify first flaws in the Advanced Encryption Standard

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August 17, 2011
Cyber Security, FedCyber Wire
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via Help Net Security

Researchers have found a weakness in the AES algorithm. They managed to come up with a clever new attack that can recover the secret key four times easier than anticipated by experts.

In the last decade, many researchers have tested the security of the AES algorithm, but no flaws were found so far.

In 2009, some weaknesses were identified when AES was used to encrypt data under four keys that are related in a way controlled by an attacker; while this attack was interesting from a mathematical point of view, the attack is not relevant in any application scenario.

The new attack applies to all versions of AES even if it used with a single key. The attack shows that finding the key of AES is four times easier than previously believed; in other words, AES-128 is more like AES-126.

Even with the new attack, the effort to recover a key is still huge: the number of steps to find the key for AES-128 is an 8 followed by 37 zeroes.

Continued here.