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Breaking Message Integrity of an End-to-End Encryption Scheme of LINE

  • Takanori Isobe
  • Kazuhiko Minematsu
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11099)

Abstract

In this paper, we analyze the security of an end-to-end encryption scheme (E2EE) of LINE, a.k.a Letter Sealing. LINE is one of the most widely-deployed instant messaging applications, especially in East Asia. By a close inspection of their protocols, we give several attacks against the message integrity of Letter Sealing. Specifically, we propose forgery and impersonation attacks on the one-to-one message encryption and the group message encryption. All of our attacks are feasible with the help of an end-to-end adversary, who has access to the inside of the LINE server (e.g. service provider LINE themselves). We stress that the main purpose of E2EE is to provide a protection against the end-to-end adversary. In addition, we found some attacks that even do not need the help of E2E adversary, which shows a critical security flaw of the protocol. Our results reveal that the E2EE scheme of LINE do not sufficiently guarantee the integrity of messages compared to the state-of-the-art E2EE schemes such as Signal, which is used by WhatApp and Facebook Messenger.

Keywords

E2EE LINE Key exchange Group message Authenticated encryption 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors would like to thank the anonymous referees for their insightful comments and suggestions. We are also grateful to LINE corporation for the fruitful discussion and feedback about our findings.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of HyogoKobeJapan
  2. 2.NEC CorporationKawasakiJapan

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