Compact Keccak Hardware Architecture for Data Integrity and Authentication on FPGAs


INFORMATION SECURITY JOURNAL, vol.21, no.5, pp.231-242, 2012 (ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 21 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/19393555.2012.660678
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.231-242
  • Keywords: compact hardware design, coprocessor approach, FPGA, Keccak, authentication
  • Anadolu University Affiliated: Yes


Cryptographic hash functions play a crucial role in networking and communication security, including their use for data integrity and message authentication. Keccak hash algorithm is one of the finalists in the next generation SHA-3 hash algorithm competition. It is based on the sponge construction whose hardware performance is worth investigation. We developed an efficient hardware architecture for the Keccak hash algorithm on Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA). Due to the serialization exploited in the proposed architecture, the area needed for its implementation is reduced significantly accompanied by higher efficiency rate. In addition, low latency is attained so that higher operating frequencies can be accessed. We use the coprocessor approach which exploits the use of RAM blocks that exist in most FPGA platforms. For this coprocessor, a new datapath structure allowing parallel execution of multiple instructions is designed. Implementation results prove that our Keccak coprocessor achieves high performance in a small area.