BAR-MITZVA ATTACK: BREAKING SSL WITH 13-YEAR OLD RC4 WEAKNESS presented at BlackHatAsia 2015

by Itsik Mantin,

Summary : RC4 is the most popular stream cipher in the world, and in particular is used to protect a significant portion of SSL/TLS sessions. In this session, we will show how an old vulnerability of RC4 can be used to mount a partial plaintext recovery attack on SSL-protected data, when RC4 is the chosen cipher. As opposed to BEAST, POODLE, CRIME, and other attacks on SSL that were published in the recent years, including the attack by Bernstein et-al on the usage of RC4, the new attack is not limited to recovery of temporal session tokens, but can be used to steal parts of permanent secret data such as account credentials when delivered as POST parameters. Furthermore, one of the variants of the new attack requires only passive eavesdropping to SSL connections, and presents the first practical attack on SSL that does not require active Man-in-the-Middle. Another unique characteristic of the new attack allows one of its variants to recover with non-negligible probability, parts of a secret that was transmitted only once over the TLS connection.