Breaking Ciphers with COPACOBANA - A Cost-Optimized Parallel Code Breaker

Sandeep Kumar, Chris­tof Paar, Jan Pelzl, G. Pfeiffer, M. Schimmler

Cryptographic Hardware and Embedded Systems - CHES 2006, 8th International Workshop, Yokohama, Japan, Proceedings. LNCS, Springer-Verlag, Oktober 10 - 13, 2006.


Cryptanalysis of symmetric and asymmetric ciphers is computationally extremely de- manding. Since the security parameters (in particular the key length) of almost all practical crypto algorithms are chosen such that attacks with conventional computers are computationally infeasible, the only promising way to tackle existing ciphers (assuming no mathematical breakthrough) is to build special-purpose hardware. Dedicating those machines to the task of cryptanalysis holds the promise of a dramatically improved cost-performance ratio so that breaking of commercial ciphers comes within reach.