Designing integrated accelerator for stream ciphers with structural similarities

Sourav Sen Gupta*, Anupam Chattopadhyay, Ayesha Khalid

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)


To date, the basic idea for implementing stream ciphers has been confined to individual standalone designs. In this paper, we introduce the notion of integrated implementation of multiple stream ciphers within a single architecture, where the goal is to achieve area and throughput efficiency by exploiting the structural similarities of the ciphers at an algorithmic level. We present two case studies to support our idea. First, we propose the merger of SNOW 3G and ZUC stream ciphers, which constitute a part of the 3GPP LTE-Advanced security suite. We propose HiPAcc-LTE, a high performance integrated design that combines the two ciphers in hardware, based on their structural similarities. The integrated architecture reduces the area overhead significantly compared to two distinct cores, and also provides almost double throughput in terms of keystream generation, compared with the state-of-the-art implementations of the individual ciphers. As our second case study, we present IntAcc-RCHC, an integrated accelerator for the stream ciphers RC4 and HC-128. We show that the integrated accelerator achieves a slight reduction in area without any loss in throughput compared to our standalone implementations. We also achieve at least 1. 5 times better throughput compared to general purpose processors. Long term vision of this hardware integration approach for cryptographic primitives is to build a flexible core supporting multiple designs having similar algorithmic structures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-47
Number of pages29
JournalCryptography and Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • 3GPP LTE-Advanced
  • Area efficiency
  • ASIC
  • HC-128
  • High throughput
  • Integrated accelerator
  • RC4
  • SNOW 3G
  • Stream ciphers
  • ZUC

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics
  • Applied Mathematics

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