Google announces first-ever SHA1 collision attack2017-02-24 16:57 by Daniela
Security researchers at the CWI institute in Amsterdam in collaboration with a team from Google Research have successfully compromised the SHA-1 hash algorithm.
The researchers describe this as "the first practical technique for generating a SHA-1 collision". By using roughly 110 years of computing from a single GPU for just one of the phases — they produced a collision, effectively breaking the algorithm.
SHA-1 (Secure Hash Algorithm 1) dates back to 1995 and has been known to be vulnerable to theoretical attacks since 2005. The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology has banned the use of SHA-1 by U.S. federal agencies since 2010, and digital certificate authorities have not been allowed to issue SHA-1-signed certificates since Jan. 1, 2016, although some exemptions have been made.
However, Git, the world's most widely used system for managing software development among multiple people, relies on it for data integrity. The GnuPG e-mail encryption program still deems SHA1 safe. And hundreds if not thousands of big-name software packages rely on SHA1 signatures to ensure installation and update files distributed over the Internet haven't been maliciously altered.
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