Re: Using MGF1 for key generation

From: Joseph Ashwood (
Date: 08/02/05

Date: Tue, 02 Aug 2005 05:06:32 GMT

"David Wagner" <> wrote in message
> Joseph Ashwood wrote:
>>Generaly advice at this point is that MGF1 (based on SHA-1) should not be
>>used for new designs due to the recent breaks in SHA-1,
> Hmm. I guess I hadn't heard that one. Is there any justification?
> My sense is that you shouldn't use SHA1 in new systems for its
> collision-resistance, but it is fine to use SHA1-HMAC for its properties
> as a pseudorandom function.

Currently it is fine, my reasons for doing this are that as SHA-1 usefulness
is narrowed it becomes far less confusing to say "Use SHA-512, or
HMAC-SHA-512" which leads them to use SHA-512 something, than "Use SHA-512,
or HMAC-SHA-1" in which case it is very possible that they will simply use
SHA-1 with it's arguable security. Since there is a reasonable belief that
SHA-256/512 is superior to SHA-1 it seems reasonable to give only those
options. The only downside is that as Paul Rubin points out there are
reasons to use SHA-1 (or 3DES) at this point which is why I always recommend
that everyone prepare to rollover to a different cipher/hash/etc when

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