In this paper we analyse two variants of SIMON family of light-weight block ciphers against variants of linear cryptanalysis and present the best linear cryptanalytic results on these variants of reduced-round SIMON to date.
We propose a time-memory trade-off method that finds differential/linear trails for any permutation allowing low Hamming weight differential/linear trails. Our method combines low Hamming weight trails found by the correlation matrix representing the target permutation with heavy Hamming weight trails found using a Mixed Integer Programming model representing the target differential/linear trail. Our method enables us to find a 17-round linear approximation for SIMON-48 which is the best current linear approximation for SIMON-48. Using only the correlation matrix method, we are able to find a 14-round linear approximation for SIMON-32 which is also the current best linear approximation for SIMON-32.
The presented linear approximations allow us to mount a 23-round key recovery attack on SIMON-32 and a 24-round Key recovery attack on SIMON-48/96 which are the current best results on SIMON-32 and SIMON-48. In addition we have an attack on 24 rounds of SIMON-32 with marginal complexity.