Journal of Cryptology

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 172–189

A Single-Key Attack on the Full GOST Block Cipher



DOI: 10.1007/s00145-012-9118-5

Cite this article as:
Isobe, T. J Cryptol (2013) 26: 172. doi:10.1007/s00145-012-9118-5


The GOST block cipher is the Russian encryption standard published in 1989. In spite of considerable cryptanalytic efforts over the past 20 years, a key recovery attack on the full GOST block cipher without any key conditions (e.g., weak keys and related keys) has not been published yet. In this paper, we show the first single-key attack, which works for all key classes, on the full GOST block cipher. To begin, we develop a new attack framework called Reflection-Meet-in-the-Middle Attack. This approach combines techniques of the reflection attack and the meet-in-the-middle (MITM) attack. Then we apply it to the GOST block cipher employing bijective S-boxes. In order to construct the full-round attack, we use additional novel techniques which are the effective MITM techniques using equivalent keys on a small number of rounds. As a result, a key can be recovered with a time complexity of 2225 encryptions and 232 known plaintexts. Moreover, we show that our attack is applicable to the full GOST block cipher using any S-boxes, including non-bijective S-boxes.

Key words

Block cipherGOSTSingle-key attackReflection attackMeet-in-the-middle attackEquivalent keys

Copyright information

© International Association for Cryptologic Research 2012