Why does Skype use AES?

canadiocanadio Member Posts: 13 ■□□□□□□□□□
Why does Skype use AES?

You would expect it to use stream encryption instead of block encryption?

Isn't AES more suited to FDE?


  • NavyMooseCCNANavyMooseCCNA CCNA R&S, ITIL, Security+ ZZ9ZZAMember Posts: 544 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Probably because it is faster, uses less resources, and is more secure than 3DES.

    'My dear you are ugly, but tomorrow I shall be sober and you will still be ugly' Winston Churchil

  • canadiocanadio Member Posts: 13 ■□□□□□□□□□
    So when are "stream" ciphers used in the real world?
  • ErtazErtaz Member Posts: 934 ■■■■■□□□□□
    canadio wrote: »
    So when are "stream" ciphers used in the real world?

    RC4 was pretty common, but it has been labeled insecure. And even block ciphers that don't support perfect forward secrecy are going the way of the dodo....
  • MannymanMannyman Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    3DES is not 'trusted'. not anymore
  • PJ_SneakersPJ_Sneakers CompTIA, EC-Council, ISACA, Microsoft USAMember Posts: 884 ■■■■■■□□□□
    AES can be used to stream encryption, by making the block sizes small and chaining them, such as in the case of WPA2.
  • Mike7Mike7 Member Posts: 1,091 ■■■■□□□□□□
    AES is turning into the standard cipher for encryption; partly helped by the fact hardware vendors such as Intel, AMD and Qualcomm have added AES hardware acceleration to their chips. The overhead of AES encryption on an AES-NI CPU is almost minimal.
  • OctalDumpOctalDump Member Posts: 1,722
    You've only got one answer where they seem to have actually read your question.

    The answer is that there are ways to use AES as a stream cipher, using counter mode or Output Feedback. These are general techniques for transforming block cipher to streams. With respect to WPA2 (which uses AES) a counter mode - CCMP - is used.

    Skype uses ICM - Integer Counter Mode - that allows AES to operate as a stream cipher.

    The other answers do kind of answer the question why AES - it's the de facto standard for most symmetric encryption needs, it's robust and flexible, AES is in hardware in many computers, the algorithms and libraries are cheap and easy to find, and it's familiar to anyone involved in implementing crypto.

    Having said that, MS implemented a "lawful intercept" function for eavesdropping on any Skype conversation, so...
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  • canadiocanadio Member Posts: 13 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Ok thanks everyone esp. OctalDump.
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