AOH :: ISNQ5811.HTM

RSA crypto defiled again, with factoring of 768-bit keys




RSA crypto defiled again, with factoring of 768-bit keys
RSA crypto defiled again, with factoring of 768-bit keys



http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/01/07/rsa_768_broken/ 

By Dan Goodin in San Francisco
The Register
7th January 2010 

Yet another domino in the RSA encryption scheme has fallen with the 
announcement Thursday that cryptographers have broken 768-bit keys using 
the widely used public-key algorithm.

An international team of mathematicians, computer scientists and 
cryptographers broke the key though NFS, or number field sieve, which 
allowed them to deduce two prime numbers that when multiplied together 
generated a number with 768 bits. The discovery, which took about 
two-and-a-half years and hundreds of general-purpose computers, means 
768-bit RSA keys can no longer be counted on to encrypt or authenticate 
sensitive communications.

More importantly, it means it's only a matter of another decade or so - 
sooner assuming there's some sort of breakthrough in NFS or some other 
form of mathematical factoring - until the next largest RSA key size, at 
1024 bits, is similarly cracked. The accomplishment was reached on 
December 12.

"It's an important milestone," said Benjamin Jun, vice president of 
technology at security consultancy Cryptography Research. "There's 
indisputable evidence here that 768-bit key are not enough. It's a 
pretty interesting way to close out a decade."

[...]


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