The legal and practical implications of recent attacks on 128-bit cryptographic hash function

Praveen Gauravaram, Adrian McCullagh, Ed Dawson


This paper discusses the legal and practical implications of attacks, presented at Crypto ’2004, against various 128–bit hash functions and in particular MD5 due to its wide usage. These attacks are significant because a number of important applications depend on MD5. It is argued in this paper that the MD–x style of hash function designs for various applications can be a single point of failure. New hash function design schemes with some strict security properties should be developed in order to avoid new attacks in the future.

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