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Date: Fri, 24 Jun 2011 04:02:05 +0400
From: Solar Designer <solar@...nwall.com>
To: oss-security@...ts.openwall.com
Subject: Re: CVE request: crypt_blowfish 8-bit character mishandling

Hi,

I analyzed the impact of the crypt_blowfish bug more thoroughly.

Initially, I thought that only lengths n*4-1 and very large lengths were
at risk of easy collisions.  And, for small lengths, I estimated that
roughly 3 out of 16 passwords containing one 8-bit character were at risk.

After more thorough analysis, it turns out that other odd lengths are
also at risk, and that "very large" starts at length 20.  Thus, I have
to revise my "3 of 16" estimate.  The new estimate for risky passwords
with one 8-bit character is 30% for lengths up to 20 inclusive.  Like
before, this assumes uniform distribution of lengths and positions for
the 8-bit character, which is obviously not the case in practice, yet it
works as an estimate.

Lengths that are _not_ at risk: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18.
The rest are at risk (meaning that 8-bit chars in _some_ positions
result in 1 to 3 preceding chars being ignored).

I also analyzed the number of collisions seen on Russian words in koi8-r
and utf-8 encodings.  I used Russian wordlists found in the Openwall
collection:

http://download.openwall.net/pub/wordlists/languages/Russian/koi8-r/

After zcat'ing the wordlists together and removing comment lines, I got
97946 different lines.  Of those, a quick grep for [ -~] suggests that
1805 contain some regular ASCII characters, and a review of those shows
that they are indeed genuine Russian wordlist entries - geographical
names that contain more than one word (and thus contain spaces),
composite words with dashes, etc.  Anyhow, 1805 out of 97946 is not
many.  The rest are apparently 8-bit only.

I also converted the resulting file to utf-8 using:

iconv -f koi8-r -t utf-8

Then I ran a trivial program crypt()'ing every line, with the buggy
version of crypt_blowfish (below 1.1) and using the same salt.

This resulted in 70890 (72%) and 97213 (99%) unique hashes for koi8-r
and utf-8, respectively.

For koi8-r, 22 hashes are seen over 100 times each, with the top one
being seen 190 times.  For utf-8, the top hash (most common) is seen 4
times, then 84 hashes are seen 3 times each.

Thus, obviously the bug does cause collisions.  There are not as many of
those as some people might expect for nearly purely 8-bit inputs.
Yet the very common hashes for koi8-r are worrisome.  Even though if one
were to run the entire koi8-r wordlist against a bunch of hashes they'd
only achieve a 30% speedup due to the bug, if they focus on words
producing 22 top hashes - so they only try 22 words - they'd crack
around 3% of passwords based on randomly picked words from that list
(assuming uniform distribution of random word numbers).  For utf-8, this
risk is much lower: trying top 85 passwords (0.087% of candidates)
effectively tests 256 of them (0.26%).

The relative speedup may be worse for more complicated passwords.  Their
guessing entropy may be reduced to being not that much higher than that
of the simple wordlist passwords above.  A mitigating factor is that
those passwords contain at least some non-8-bit characters (digits,
spaces, punctuation), which would not overwrite any preceding characters
(but may be getting overwritten themselves, unfortunately).

I've attached two files - a list of affected {length, position}s with
their corresponding overwritten character positions, and the program
used to generate this list.  (Yes, this message is just below the size
threshold for this mailing list.)

Alexander

View attachment "bugana-output.txt" of type "text/plain" (64630 bytes)

View attachment "bugana.c" of type "text/plain" (1035 bytes)

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