Hi Hanno/all,

I can understand your view that "more is not always good" in crypto. The reasoning behind the offering can be found in the following whitepaper:


I will summarize in a different way though. We wish to offer an optimized lightweight TLS for IoT. A majority of devices found in IoT are resource constrained, for example a device CPU may only have 32K of RAM. Therefore security is an afterthought by developers. For some only AES 128 is available and they wish to use 256 bit encryption. Then Speck 256 would be an option because it has better performance and provides sufficient security.

Based on the above scenario you can likely see why we are interested in OpenSSL. First, OpenSSL can be used for terminating lightweight TLS connections near the edge, and then forwarding using commonly used ciphers.

[IoT Device] -----TLS/Speck---->[IoT Gateway]-----TLS----> [Services]

Also, we are interested in using OpenSSL libraries at the edge for client creation. One thing we would like to do is provide instructions for an highly optimized build of OpenSSL that can be used for contrained devices.

I think demand will eventually grow because there is an initiative by the US government to improve IoT Security and Speck is being developed and proposed as a standard within the government. Therefore, I see users who wish to play in this space would be interested in a version where Speck could be used in OpenSSL.

It is my hope to accomplish the following:

[1] Make Speck available via Open Source, this could be as an option or as a patch in OpenSSL. [2] If we make it available as a patch, is there a place where we would announce/make it known that it is available?

We are also looking at open-sourcing the client side code. This would be used to create light-weight clients that use Speck and currently we also build basic OAuth capability on top of it.

Thanks for your input!


On 1/5/2018 11:40 AM, Hanno Böck wrote:
On Fri, 5 Jan 2018 10:52:01 -0800
William Bathurst <wbath...@gmail.com> wrote:

1) Community interest in such a lightweight cipher.
I think there's a shifting view that "more is not always good" in
crypto. OpenSSL has added features in the past "just because" and it
was often a bad decision.

Therefore I'd generally oppose adding ciphers without a clear usecase,
as increased code complexity has a cost.
So I think questions that should be answered:
What's the usecase for speck in OpenSSL? Are there plans to use it in
TLS? If yes why? By whom? What advantages does it have over existing
ciphers? (Yeah, it's "lightweight", but that's a pretty vague thing.)

Also just for completeness, as some may not be aware: There are some
concerns about Speck due to its origin (aka the NSA). I don't think
that is a reason to dismiss a cipher right away, what I'd find more
concerning is that from what I observed there hasn't been a lot of
research about speck.

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