Secrecy and Performance Analysis of Symmetric Key Encryption Algorithms

T.D.B Weerasinghe


In open literature there is a lack of focus on Shannon‟s secrecy of ciphers as a security measurement of symmetric key encryption, hence in this research, Shannon‟s theories on secrecy of ciphers were used to calculate the average secrecy of each symmetric cipher used in this research. All secrecy and performance analysis were done using a newly created tool. Analysis is done based on the secrecy level and performance of the algorithm. This paper presents an analysis of some of the widely used symmetric key algorithms which fall under the categories of block and stream ciphers together with the two combined algorithms. [DES, TripleDES, AES, RC2, RC4, Hybrid1 (TripleDES+RC4) and Hybrid2 (AES+RC4) are used]. Analysis is pivoted around on two measurement criteria under two circumstances which are described later in this paper. All the algorithms are implemented in Core Java using classes available in JAVA package javax.crypto. Separate classes are written to calculate the secrecy of ciphers and the encryption time. And also the tool is created using Core Java with the help of Netbeans IDE. As far as the outcome of the research is concerned, the performances of all stream ciphers are higher than that of block ciphers and the combined algorithms have similar performance level to block ciphers. Secrecy levels of block ciphers are comparatively higher than that of stream ciphers as the history says, it is further proved by Shannon‟s theories in this research. The combined algorithms have more stable secrecy levels.,

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