2015 Volume E98.A Issue 1 Pages 144-152
Rainbow is one of signature schemes based on the problem solving a set of multivariate quadratic equations. While its signature generation and verification are fast and the security is presently sufficient under suitable parameter selections, the key size is relatively large. Recently, Quaternion Rainbow — Rainbow over a quaternion ring — was proposed by Yasuda, Sakurai and Takagi (CT-RSA'12) to reduce the key size of Rainbow without impairing the security. However, a new vulnerability emerges from the structure of quaternion ring; in fact, Thomae (SCN'12) found that Quaternion Rainbow is less secure than the same-size original Rainbow. In the present paper, we further study the structure of Quaternion Rainbow and show that Quaternion Rainbow is one of sparse versions of the Rainbow. Its sparse structure causes a vulnerability of Quaternion Rainbow. Especially, we find that Quaternion Rainbow over even characteristic field, whose security level is estimated as about the original Rainbow of at most 3/4 by Thomae's analysis, is almost as secure as the original Rainbow of at most 1/4-size.