Matasano Crypto Challenges, Set 1

Challenge 1.1 Convert hex to base64

The first challenge is pretty straightforward, using python’s built-in functions or pwntools, as I use heavily in these challenges.

The functions a2b_hex, unhexlify, and ''.decode("hex") all do the same thing. They take in an ascii string of the form “[0-9a-f]*” and decode it. The string decodes to
I'm killing your brain like a poisonous mushroom. We can then use binascii.b2a_base64() to convert the byte string to a base64 representation.

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Matasano Crypto Challenges, Set 2

Challenge 9 Implement PKCS#7 padding

As the challenge states, “A block cipher transforms a fixed-sized block (usually 8 or 16 bytes) of plaintext into ciphertext. But we almost never want to transform a single block; we encrypt irregularly-sized messages.”

The PKCS#7 padding scheme will append the number of bytes of padding to the end of the block. I use the pwntools pack() function to pack the number of padding bytes.

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Matasano Crypto Challenges, Set 3

Challenge 17 The CBC padding oracle!!!

The CBC padding oracle is a very famous attack. We have an oracle function that takes in a ciphertext and decrypts it, returning True if the plaintext is padded properly.

The process behind the attack on each block is:

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Matasano Crypto Challenges, Set 4

Challenge 25 Break “random access read/write” AES CTR

Because we can seek into the ciphertext and edit arbitrary characters, we we can simply guess each plaintext character.

For each byte in the ciphertext, I can try all 256 characters by replacing the ciphertext byte with my encrypted guess using the provided edit() function. If the new ciphertext exactly matches the original ciphertext, then I know my guess for the plaintext character is correct, since it encrypted to the same byte.

for i in xrange(len(ciphertext)):
for c in candidates:
new_ciphertext = edit(ciphertext, i, c)

if new_ciphertext[i] == ciphertext[i]:
result += c

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NSA Cybersprint 2015

This is my first writeup, written in 2015 in Word and back-dated

Last weekend, I took to some haxxoring in the NSA Cybersprint Competition, a Capture-The-Flag that took place on a simulated corporate network infrastructure.

Here’s what it was like.

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