# Mathematical Backdoors in Symmetric Encryption Systems - Proposal for a Backdoored AES-like Block Cipher

### Arnaud Bannier, Eric Filiol

#### Abstract

Recent years have shown that more than ever governments and intelligence agencies try to control and bypass the cryptographic means used for the protection of data. Backdooring encryption algorithms is considered as the best way to enforce cryptographic control. Until now, only implementation backdoors (at the protocol/ implementation/management level) are generally considered. In this paper we propose to address the most critical issue of backdoors: mathematical backdoors or by-design backdoors, which are put directly at the mathematical design of the encryption algorithm. While the algorithm may be totally public, proving that there is a backdoor, identifying it and exploiting it, may be an intractable problem. We intend to explain that it is probably possible to design and put such backdoors. Considering a particular family (among all the possible ones), we present BEA-1, a block cipher algorithm which is similar to the AES and which contains a mathematical backdoor enabling an operational and effective cryptanalysis. The BEA-1 algorithm (80-bit block size, 120-bit key, 11 rounds) is designed to resist to linear and differential cryptanalyses. A challenge will be proposed to the cryptography community soon. Its aim is to assess whether our backdoor is easily detectable and exploitable or not.

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#### Paper Citation

#### in Harvard Style

Bannier A. and Filiol E. (2017). **Mathematical Backdoors in Symmetric Encryption Systems - Proposal for a Backdoored AES-like Block Cipher** . In *Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Information Systems Security and Privacy - Volume 1: ForSE, (ICISSP 2017)* ISBN 978-989-758-209-7, pages 622-631. DOI: 10.5220/0006244406220631

#### in Bibtex Style

@conference{forse17,

author={Arnaud Bannier and Eric Filiol},

title={Mathematical Backdoors in Symmetric Encryption Systems - Proposal for a Backdoored AES-like Block Cipher},

booktitle={Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Information Systems Security and Privacy - Volume 1: ForSE, (ICISSP 2017)},

year={2017},

pages={622-631},

publisher={SciTePress},

organization={INSTICC},

doi={10.5220/0006244406220631},

isbn={978-989-758-209-7},

}

#### in EndNote Style

TY - CONF

JO - Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Information Systems Security and Privacy - Volume 1: ForSE, (ICISSP 2017)

TI - Mathematical Backdoors in Symmetric Encryption Systems - Proposal for a Backdoored AES-like Block Cipher

SN - 978-989-758-209-7

AU - Bannier A.

AU - Filiol E.

PY - 2017

SP - 622

EP - 631

DO - 10.5220/0006244406220631