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ACVP

Industry Working Group on Automated Cryptographic Algorithm Validation

ACVP

The Automated Cryptographic Validation Protocol (ACVP) is a protocol currently under development to support a new National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) testing scope at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

All current information about ACVP may be found within this Github project. View the documents at https://usnistgov.github.io/ACVP/.

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Background

The rapid development of cryptographic technology over the last two decades and its adoption in many different technology domains has resulted in a sharp increase in the number and complexity of approved algorithms. The volume of cryptographic algorithm validations has outstripped the available human resources available to test, report, and validate results. The plethora of different algorithms has created a dire need for consistent requesting and reporting of test data and results. We also live in times of unprecedented levels of threats and exploits that require frequent product updates to fix defects and remove security vulnerabilities, which in turn requires much faster turnaround of validation updates than what the existing validation model allows. See the NIST Automated Cryptographic Validation Testing project for broader context and information.

Requirements documents for the existing Cryptrographic Algorithm Validation Program (CAVP) and the 17CAV scope can be found at https://www.nist.gov/national-voluntary-laboratory-accreditation-program-nvlap/requirements-documents-5. The requirements documents for the ACVP scope will likely be found on the same page once they have been finalized and published.

General information about CAVP can be found at https://csrc.nist.gov/Projects/Cryptographic-Algorithm-Validation-Program with the CAVP management manual found at https://csrc.nist.gov/CSRC/media/Projects/Cryptographic-Algorithm-Validation-Program/documents/CAVPMM.pdf and the FAQ at https://csrc.nist.gov/CSRC/media/Projects/Cryptographic-Algorithm-Validation-Program/documents/CAVPFAQ.pdf.

Objective

The objective of this project is to define a protocol allowing independent implementation by all vendors participating in the NIST cryptographic validation programs (CAVP and CMVP) for accelerated test data generation and requisition, reporting of test results, and validation of NIST-approved cryptographic algorithms (see FIPS 140-2 Annex A, Annex C and Annex D).

Project Goals

The development of an Automated Cryptographic Validation Protocol (ACVP) that enables the generation and validation of standardized algorithm test evidence to facilitate the modernization of CAVP and CMVP.

The new automated testing scope is available starting on April 8, 2019. This testing scope will eventually replace the existing Cryptographic Algorithm Validation Testing (17CAV) scope. To allow for a smooth transition both scopes will be available for no less than six months, but the legacy 17CAV scope will be retired after no more than one year and may be retired earlier depending on the speed of the transition and scope of testing improvements ACVP implements relative to the legacy 17CAV scope .

Status

The demo server (demo.acvts.nist.gov) supports ACVP version 1.0. All endpoints defined in the protocol specification are available.

The demo server allows validation of the following algorithms (a superset of the algorithms available through the CAVS tool). NOT ALL OF THE ALGORITHMS AVAILABLE ON THE DEMO SERVER ARE NIST-APPROVED ALGORITHMS. The prod server supports a subset of the listed algorithms.

Supported Algorithms

Block Cipher Modes

Secure Hash

XOFs

Message Authentication

DRBG

Digital Signature

Key Agreement

KDFs

Safe Primes

The prod server supports all of the above except for the EdDSA variants, AES-FF3-1, KAS/KTS-IFC, and AES-GCM-SIV. Some of these algorithms have NIST SP800 series drafts in progress and will be available on the prod server when the draft becomes a standard.

Current 1.0 Support

Please check the protocol specification for details on how to access the available resources.

Accessing the demo server

To access the demo server one needs a TLS credential and a one-time password (OTP). The protocol specification and other development information are available in this repository. You may want to use the companion ACVP client to jump-start your work.

To set expectations, since this is a demo system, it will be in a state of flux and any all data on the system is considered temporary and may be reset to accommodate development of the Automated Cryptographic Validation Protocol (ACVP) service. We will try to keep the demo service relatively stable, but we plan to update it as we continue to add new algorithms and capabilities.

Obtaining TLS credentials

To access the demo environment you will need to send your CSR to us. Please use a 2048-bit RSA key pair and sign using at least a SHA-256 hash. Please send a request to acvts-demo@nist.gov with ‘CSR REQUEST FOR ACCESS TO DEMO’ in the subject line. You will receive instructions for how to upload your CSR.

You are expected to protect the key pair from unauthorized use and to notify NIST in the event the keypair becomes compromised. Also, since we do not have a formal login page the following notice applies when accessing the ACVP system:

“***WARNING***WARNING***WARNING
You are accessing a U.S. Government information system, which includes: 1) this computer, 
2) this computer network, 3) all computers connected to this network, and 4) all devices 
and storage media attached to this network or to a computer on this network. You understand 
and consent to the following: you may access this information system for authorized use 
only; you have no reasonable expectation of privacy regarding any communication of data 
transiting or stored on this information system; at any time and for any lawful Government 
purpose, the Government may monitor, intercept, and search and seize any communication or 
data transiting or stored on this information system; and any communications or data 
transiting or stored on this information system may be disclosed or used for any lawful 
Government purpose.
***WARNING***WARNING***WARNING”

Configuring and using One-Time-Passwords (OTP)

Please be aware that starting in the week of March 12th, 2018, the second-factor authentication based on OTP and associated workflows have been turned-on - see details here.

Contribution guidelines

If you want to contribute, please follow the simple rules below and send us pull requests.

If you would like to talk to our developers, you may want to send email to our mailing list algotest@list.nist.gov. You may also report bugs or request new tests.

Related projects

Licensing terms

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