[Resource Topic] 2021/849: Curse of Re-encryption: A Generic Power/EM Analysis on Post-Quantum KEMs

Welcome to the resource topic for 2021/849

Curse of Re-encryption: A Generic Power/EM Analysis on Post-Quantum KEMs

Authors: Rei Ueno, Keita Xagawa, Yutaro Tanaka, Akira Ito, Junko Takahashi, Naofumi Homma


This paper presents a side-channel analysis (SCA) on key encapsulation mechanism (KEM) based on the Fujisaki–Okamoto (FO) transformation and its variants. The FO transformation has been widely used in actively securing KEMs from passively secure public key encryption (PKE), as it is employed in most of NIST post-quantum cryptography (PQC) candidates for KEM. The proposed attack exploits side-channel leakage during execution of a psuedorandom function (PRF) in the re-encryption of KEM decapsulation as a plaintext-checking oracle that tells whether the PKE decryption result is equivalent to the reference plaintext. The generality and practicality of the plaintext-checking oracle allows the proposed attack to attain a full-key recovery of various KEMs when an active attack on the underlying PKE is known. This paper demonstrates that the proposed attack can be applied to most NIST PQC third-round KEM candidates, namely, Kyber, Saber, FrodoKEM, NTRU, NTRU Prime, HQC, BIKE, and SIKE (for BIKE, the proposed attack achieves a partial key recovery). The applicability to Classic McEliece is unclear because there is no known active attack on this cryptosystem. This paper also presents a side-channel distinguisher design based on deep learning (DL) for mounting the proposed attack on practical implementation without the use of a profiling device. The feasibility of the proposed attack is demonstrated through experimental attacks on various PRF implementations (a SHAKE software, an AES software, an AES hardware, a bit-sliced masked AES software, and a masked AES hardware based on threshold implementation). The success of the proposed attack against all of these implementations, which include masked hardware based on threshold implementation, confirms its practicality.

ePrint: https://eprint.iacr.org/2021/849

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