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Side-channel attacks

Overview#

Side-channel attacks is any attack based on information gained from the physical implementation of a cryptosystem, rather than Brute-Force or Cryptographically Weakness in the algorithms.

For example, timing information, power consumption, electromagnetic Information Leakage or even sound can provide an extra source of information, which can be exploited to break the system.

Side-channel attacks, being based on physical implementation, may be effective on Information-theoretic Secure cryptographic Primitives or algorithms.

Some Side-channel attacks require technical knowledge of the internal operation of the system, either the Operating System or even the hardware, on which the cryptography is implemented, although others such as differential power analysis are effective as black-box attacks.

Many powerful Side-channel attacks are based on statistical methods pioneered by Paul Kocher.

Attempts to break a Cryptographic system by deceiving or coercing people with legitimate access are typically considered Social Engineering Attack.

More Information#

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