Out of Oddity -- New Cryptanalytic Techniques against Symmetric Primitives Optimized for Integrity Proof Systems


The security and performance of many integrity proof systems like SNARKs, STARKs and Bulletproofs highly depend on the underlying hash function. For this reason several new proposals have recently been developed. These primitives obviously require an in-depth security evaluation, especially since their implementation constraints have led to less standard design approaches. This work compares the security levels offered by two recent families of such primitives, namely GMiMC and HadesMiMC. We exhibit low-complexity distinguishers against the GMiMC and HadesMiMC permutations for most parameters proposed in recently launched public challenges for STARK-friendly hash functions. In the more concrete setting of the sponge construction corresponding to the practical use in the ZK-STARK protocol, we present a practical collision attack on a round-reduced version of GMiMC and a preimage attack on some instances of HadesMiMC. To achieve those results, we adapt and generalize several cryptographic techniques to fields of odd characteristic.

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