[RC5] [ADMIN] DES-II-2 is over...

Adam L. Beberg beberg at distributed.net
Fri Jul 17 04:49:46 EDT 1998


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In a press release (http://www.eff.org/descracker.html) the Electronic
Frontier Foundation (EFF) announced today that it had beat DES-II-2
using a machine it developed for US$250,000 designed specifically to
crack DES.

distributed.net is thrilled that it has been shown DES can be
cracked in a remarkably short time, with dedicated special purpose
hardware. The fact that this DES contest could be cracked in only
2.5 days dramatically demonstrates that 56-bit encryption is not
adequate for any serious privacy/security use.

We congratulate them for their achievement, and hope they have fun
playing Quake on their new box for the next 6 months until DES-II-3.
:)

distributed.net is currently testing DES keys at aproximately the same
rate as EFF (while still working on 11Gkeys/sec of RC5), using only
spare cycles on existing machines. This demonstrates that 56-bit
encryption is vulnerable to a variety of attacks, by organizations
large and small.

Despite this report of DES-II-2 being cracked, we will continue to
distribute keys until we get confirmation from RSA. Your clients
should switch back automatically once we flip the switch.

We hope to see the EFF again for DES-II-3 at which point we expect
our general purpose architecture to be at least 2.6 times faster
than it is now. In the meantime distributed.net will pursue other
distributed computing projects like RC5-64.

  Adam L. Beberg
  beberg at distributed.net
  distributed.net founder
  http://www.iit.edu/~beberg/

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