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Crypto for everyone - libsodium in PHP 7.2

Crypto for everyone - libsodium in PHP 7.2

PHP 7.2 includes the libsodium cryptography library by default in the base language - the first time that a popular language has shipped with strong, modern crypto support as standard. Everyone can build secure apps without the risks of rolling your own crypto or using outdated libraries. So what's in libsodium? What kind of things can you do? What risks remain? You'll get a tour of cryptographic functions, how they have been done in the past, and how to switch to libsodium to give you a security edge.

I gave this talk at ConFoo Montreal 2018.


Marcus Bointon

March 07, 2018


  1. CRYPTO FOR EVERYONE Libsodium in PHP 7.2 Marcus Bointon Synchromedia

    Limited, Smartmessages.net, Radically Open Security, PHPMailer @SynchroM
  2. WHAT’S CRYPTO? Cryptography ➤ Crypto: secret ➤ Graphy: writing Writing

    messages that can only be read by the intended recipient ➤ Confidentiality Proving that you wrote a message ➤ Authenticity Proving that a message has not been altered ➤ Integrity Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  3. CRYPTOGRAPHIC FUNCTIONS 0 keys: hashes, PRNGs, key derivation ➤ MD5,

    SHA1, SHA2, BLAKE2, bcrypt, PBKDF2, argon2 1 key: message authentication codes (MACs), secret key encryption ➤ HMAC*, Poly1305, RC4, Blowfish, 3DES, AES, ChaCha20 2 keys: key exchange, public key encryption, digital signatures ➤ Diffie-Hellman, RSA, DSA, ECDSA, EdDSA, PGP Related non-crypto: encoding, compression, math operations ➤ base64, charsets, gzip, bin2hex, hash_equals Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  4. CORE & EXTENSION CRYPTO IN PHP mhash: PHP 4 mcrypt:

    PHP 4.0.2 - 7.1 openssl: PHP 4.0.4 pecl-gnupg: PHP 4.3 hash: PHP 5.1.2 pecl-scrypt: PHP 5.2 password_hash: PHP 5.5 hash_equals: PHP 5.6 CSPRNG: PHP 7.0 pecl-libsodium: PHP 5.6 sodium: PHP 7.2 Marcus Bointon @SynchroM

  6. PHP CRYPTO LIBRARIES pear crypt_* phpseclib/phpseclib defuse/php-encryption paragonie/sodium_compat paragonie/halite phpseclib/mcrypt_compat

    zendframework/zend-crypt Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  7. WHAT’S LIBSODIUM? NaCl - “Salt” ➤ Networking and cryptography library,

    2008 ➤ nacl.cr.yp.to ➤ High-performance, legacy-free, heavily scrutinised open-source C library ➤ Resistant to many forms of attack & side channels Libsodium ➤ Fork of NaCl, also open-source, libsodium.org ➤ Cross-platform, multiple language bindings, audited code ➤ Available in PHP via pecl since 2014, standard in PHP 7.2 Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  8. SALTY PEOPLE NaCl ➤ Daniel J. Bernstein (“DJB”), Tanja Lange,

    Peter Schwabe ➤ University of Eindhoven in the Netherlands ➤ Numerous other contributors Marcus Bointon @SynchroM Libsodium ➤ Frank Denis @jedisct1 ➤ Developer & photographer in Paris ➤ pure-ftpd ➤ Scott Arciszewski @CiPHPerCoder, @ParagonIE ➤ Documentation & wisdom!
  9. WHAT’S A SIDE-CHANNEL ATTACK? Any attack based on information gained

    from the physical implementation of a system, rather than weaknesses in the implemented algorithm itself Timing, thermal, RF emissions, light, sound, power Examples: Spectre & meltdown, password hash timing, Ethernet switch lights Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  10. EXAMPLE: SIDE CHANNEL VULNERABILITY //Old, insecure $pw = md5($_POST['password']); $r

    = mysqli_query($db, "SELECT id, name FROM users WHERE email = ‘user@example.com’ AND password = '$pw'"); if (count($r) <= 0) die('Go away!'); //Safe $r = mysqli_query($db, "SELECT id, name, password FROM users WHERE email = 'user@example.com'"); $f = mysqli_fetch_assoc($r); if (!password_verify($_POST['password'], $f['password'])) die('Go away!’); //or if (!sodium_crypto_pwhash_str_verify($_POST['password'], $f['password'])) die('Go away!'); Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  11. HASHING Hash algorithms may be designed for different purposes ➤

    Fast ones for checksumming, verification: MD*, SHA*, BLAKE2 ➤ Slow ones for password hashing: bcrypt, scrypt, PBKDF2, Argon2 Many old apps used weak MD5 for password hashes ➤ These are very easily cracked/reversed Reference implementations – SHA-256 vs SHA-512/256 Argon2i, Argon2d, Argon2id When writing new apps, use the strongest available; To upgrade, rehash on login Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  12. HASHING WITH SODIUM md5(), sha1(), hash() ➜ sodium_crypto_generichash() ➤ Uses

    BLAKE2b ➤ As strong as SHA-3, faster than MD5 crc32(), hash() ➜ sodium_crypto_shorthash() ➤ Short hashes are often used for non-crypto purposes password_hash() ➜ sodium_crypto_pwhash() ➤ Gives you access to Argon2id, everywhere PHP 7.2 runs Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  13. MESSAGE AUTHENTICATION CODES Like a hash, but uses a key

    as well as the input data Used to authenticate messages Most common: HMAC ➤ Hash-based message authentication code ➤ Adds a key to an existing hash algorithm ➤ HMAC-MD5, HMAC-SHA256, HMAC- SHA512-256, HMAC-SHA512/256 Poly1305 Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  14. MACS IN SODIUM hash_hmac ➜ sodium_crypto_auth $mac = substr(hash_hmac('sha512', $message,

    $key), 0, 64) $mac = bin2hex(sodium_crypto_auth($message, $key)) hash_equals ➜ crypto_auth_verify hash_equals($mac, substr(hash_hmac('sha512', $message, $key), 0, 64)); sodium_crypto_auth_verify($mac, $message, $key); Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  15. SECRET-KEY ENCRYPTION Encrypt and decrypt with the same key ➤

    Symmetric cipher ➤ Does not guarantee integrity or authenticity ➤ Add a MAC to do that sodium_crypto_secretbox* functions ➤ Combined encrypt-then-MAC sodium_crypto_aead_* functions ➤ Achieves the same, but more efficiently ➤ Uses ChaCha20-Poly1305 or AES256-GCM AEAD ciphers Marcus Bointon @SynchroM

    $ciphertext = sodium_crypto_secretbox('test', $nonce, $key); $ciphertext = sodium_crypto_aead_chacha20poly1305_encrypt('test', $nonce, $nonce, $key); //Decrypt: $plaintext = sodium_crypto_secretbox_open($ciphertext, $nonce, $key); $plaintext = sodium_crypto_aead_chacha20poly1305_decrypt($ciphertext, $nonce, $nonce, $key); //Variants: sodium_crypto_aead_chacha20poly1305_ietf_encrypt() sodium_crypto_aead_xchacha20poly1305_ietf_encrypt() //Future: sodium_crypto_aead_encrypt(); Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  17. PUBLIC-KEY ENCRYPTION Sender & receiver each have two keys: private

    & public Messages encrypted with a public key can be decrypted with a private key Critical component of Key Exchange ➤ Public key encryption used to exchange a secret key, so that faster symmetric ciphers can be used Popular algorithms: RSA, Diffie-Hellman, X25519 Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  18. PUBLIC KEY ENCRYPTION IN SODIUM sodium_crypto_box_* functions Uses X25519 key

    exchange, XSalsa20 stream cipher, Poly1305 MAC Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  19. EXAMPLE: PUBLIC KEY ENCRYPTION On node A: $aliceKeypair = sodium_crypto_box_keypair();

    $aliceSecretKey = sodium_crypto_box_secretkey($aliceKeypair); $alicePublicKey = sodium_crypto_box_publickey($aliceKeypair); On node B: $bobKeypair = sodium_crypto_box_keypair(); $bobSecretKey = sodium_crypto_box_secretkey($bobKeypair); $bobPublicKey = sodium_crypto_box_publickey($bobKeypair); Sending from Node A to Node B $message 'Hi there! :)'; $aliceToBob = $aliceSecretKey . $bobPublicKey; $nonce = random_bytes(24); /* Never repeat this! */ $ciphertext = $nonce . sodium_crypto_box($message, $nonce, $aliceToBob); On Node B, receiving an encrypted message from Node A $bobToAlice = $bobSecretKey . $alicePublicKey; $nonce = mb_substr($ciphertext, 0, 24, '8bit'); $encrypted = mb_substr($ciphertext, 24, null, '8bit'); $decrypted = sodium_crypto_box_open($encrypted, $nonce, $bobToAlice); Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  20. OTHER CRYPTO FUNCTIONS Key derivation ➤ Avoid using your real,

    private key, generate one from it and use that instead ➤ sodium_crypto_pwhash Key exchange ➤ sodium_crypto_kx_* ➤ Great explanation on Wikipedia! Digital Signatures ➤ Like using public key encryption backwards Marcus Bointon @SynchroM
  21. DOCUMENTATION Marcus Bointon @SynchroM

  22. DOCUMENTATION Fortunately there are other sources: https://download.libsodium.org/doc/ https://paragonie.com/book/pecl- libsodium https://paragonie.com/blog/

    ➤ Guide to Building Secure PHP Software http://www.phptherightway.com Marcus Bointon @SynchroM