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A different algebraic analysis of the ZUC stream cipher

By Mufeed Al Mashrafi


Existing algebraic analyses of the ZUC cipher indicate that the cipher should be secure against algebraic attacks. In this paper, we present an alternative algebraic analysis method for the ZUC stream cipher, where a combiner is used to represent the nonlinear function and to derive equations representing the cipher. Using this approach, the initial states of ZUC can be recovered from 2^97 observed words of keystream, with a complexity of 2^282 operations. This method is more successful when applied to a modified version of ZUC, where the number of output words per clock is increased. If the cipher outputs 120 bits of keystream per clock, the attack can succeed with 219 observed keystream bits and 2^47 operations. Therefore, the security of ZUC against algebraic attack could be significantly reduced if its throughput was to be increased for efficiency.\u

Topics: 080303 Computer System Security, Algebraic Attacks, Stream Ciphers, ZUC, 128-EEA3, 128-EIA3, Multivariate Equations
Publisher: ACM
Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1145/2070425.2070455
OAI identifier:

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