Crypto - 100 Points

Challenge source code


This challenge was pretty easy (a simple chained modular addition), but I want to share the script I wrote that automagically solve this type of challenge.
Note: Modular addition behaves the same way as XOR operation, you know. ;)

The my_encrypt function takes as input the flag and the key, hash the key with md5 and then append the hash to the flag. Finally the text is encrypted with the key hash.
Note: the ciphertext is encoded in little-endian hex.

What is a chained modular addition?
IDK either.

Anyway, it’s a stream cipher that for each character adds together the current plaintext char, the previous ciphertext char and the current key char. All the additions are in modular arithmetic.

We took advantage of the DCTF{} flag format as plaintext, the md5 and the flag (DCTF{sha256(text)}) length.
With this knowledge we successfully retrived the key part by part with successive decryption.

You can see the solver script here

Those known parameters are easily tweakable in the solver script.

  • klength is the key length.
  • llength is the plaintext length excluding the key appended. (in this case was DCTF{sha256}|)
  • s is the ciphertext (big-endian hex encoded)
  • kn is the known part of the plaintext (in this case was DCTF{)
  • modu is the module of the addition (given in the source code)
  • decrypt function is totally separated from the solver logic, you can do whatever you want here

How the solver works?

In the first step, it takes the known part of the plaintext and retrieves the related part of the key.
In our case it was the starting piece of the flag format.
Note: If you know another piece of plaintext, and not the starting part, you can tweak the solver script and pass to the decKey function the index from the start :D

Then the magic happens.
The script constructs a fake plaintext made of _s, decrypts the ciphertext with the retrieved part of the key, and then takes from the end of the plaintext a different part of the key (since the key was appended!).
Step after step the ciphertext is decrypted and the plaintext is revealed part by part resulting in a magical auto-complete effect.