04 August, 2005

ECRYPT Stream Cipher Project

The ECRYPT Stream Cipher project is a project run by ECRYPT (an EU programme for cryptology and watermarking) to identify "new stream ciphers that might become suitable for widespread adoption". It guess this will be something a little like the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) competition, but for stream ciphers rather than block ciphers (and they're just evaluating the designs, and not selecting a single standard). The call for primitives was first issued in November 2004, and they received a whopping 34 designs by the deadline last April. Some famous(ish) names have submitted or co-submitted designs, including Joan Daemen (MOSQUITO), Eli Biham (Py), Bruce Schneier (Phelix) and Daniel J. Bernstein (Salsa20).

Eli Biham and Jennifer Seberry note that their submission "Py" is pronounced "Roo, a shorthand for Kangeroo". This is because it's written in the Cyrillic alphabet, apparently. Ah..hah. A worthy attempt to carry on the recent tradition for bizarrly-named and unpronounceable cryptographic primitives, then.

The project has advertised for four "profiles" of stream ciphers that they're looking for, distinguishing between those that perform well on hardware and software, and those that include authentication built-in and those that do not.

It's going to take a while, though. By July 2006, they'll be selecting a subset of the designs as finalists, with the project due to complete in January 2008. Still, it looks like it'll be a lot of fun, with researchers finding flaws with each other's ciphers. There's a discussion forum and a list of papers.

If you're lucky, I might blog a little about each of the designs -- won't that be a treat?


Blogger College Boy said...

Too bad my Pineapple cipher is a block cipher.


2:34 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh yep, please blog about the ciphers. I am currently reading the paper about Py.

3:09 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last time I read about Py was in a book called Winnie the Poo :-)

Stu Savory,
a recidivist who inculcates in a sesquipedalian blog :-)

5:30 am  

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