Divide and Rule: DiFA - Division Property Based Fault Attacks on PRESENT and GIFT

Anup Kumar Kundu, Shibam Ghosh, Dhiman Saha, Mostafizar Rahman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The division property introduced by Todo in Crypto 2015 is one of the most versatile tools in the arsenal of a cryptanalyst which has given new insights into many ciphers primarily from an algebraic perspective. On the other end of the spectrum we have fault attacks which have evolved into the deadliest of all physical attacks on cryptosystems. The current work aims to combine these seemingly distant tools to come up with a new type of fault attack. We show how fault invariants are formed under special input division multi-sets and are independent of the fault injection location. It is further shown that the same division trail can be exploited as a multi-round Zero-Sum distinguisher to reduce the key-space to practical limits. As a proof of concept division trails of PRESENT and GIFT are exploited to mount practical key-recovery attacks based on the random nibble fault model. For GIFT-64, we are able to recover the unique master-key with 30 nibble faults with faults injected at rounds 21 and 19. For PRESENT-80, DiFA reduces the key-space from 280 to 216 with 15 faults in round 25 while for PRESENT-128, the unique key is recovered with 30 faults in rounds 25 and 24. This constitutes the best fault attacks on these ciphers in terms of fault injection rounds. We also report an interesting property pertaining to fault induced division trails which shows its inapplicability to attack GIFT-128. Overall, the usage of division trails in fault based cryptanalysis showcases new possibilities and reiterates the applicability of classical cryptanalytic tools in physical attacks.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationApplied Cryptography and Network Security - 21st International Conference, ACNS 2023, Proceedings
EditorsMehdi Tibouchi, XiaoFeng Wang
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages28
ISBN (Print)9783031334870
StatePublished - 2023
Event21st International Conference on Applied Cryptography and Network Security, ACNS 2023 - Kyoto, Japan
Duration: 19 Jun 202322 Jun 2023

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume13905 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference21st International Conference on Applied Cryptography and Network Security, ACNS 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023, The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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