Philipp Jovanovic

Analysis of NORX: Investigating Differential and Rotational Properties

Jean-Philippe Aumasson, Philipp Jovanovic, Samuel Neves

Progress in Cryptology – Latincrypt, 2014


This paper presents a thorough analysis of the AEAD scheme NORX, focussing on differential and rotational properties. We first introduce mathematical models that describe differential propagation with respect to the non-linear operation of NORX. Afterwards, we adapt a framework previously proposed for ARX designs allowing us to automatise the search for differentials and characteristics. We give upper bounds on the differential probability for a small number of steps of the NORX core permutation. For example, in a scenario where an attacker can only modify the nonce during initialisation, we show that characteristics have probabilities of less than \( 2^{−60} \) (32-bit) and \( 2^{−53} \) (64-bit) after only one round. Furthermore, we describe how we found the best characteristics for four rounds, which have probabilities of \( 2^{−584} \) (32-bit) and \( 2^{−836} \) (64-bit), respectively. Finally, we discuss some rotational properties of the core permutation which yield some first, rough bounds and can be used as a basis for future studies.