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Initially, the EncryptContent processor had a single method of deriving the encryption key from a user-provided password. This is now referred to as NiFiLegacy mode, effectively MD5 digest, 1000 iterations. In v0.4.0, another method of deriving the key, OpenSSL PKCS#5 v1.5 EVP_BytesToKey was added for compatibility with content encrypted outside of NiFi using the openssl command-line tool. Both of these Key Derivation Functions (KDF) had hard-coded digest functions and iteration counts, and the salt format was also hard-coded. With v0.5.0, additional KDFs are introduced with variable iteration counts, work factors, and salt formats. In addition, raw keyed encryption was also introduced. This required the capacity to encode arbitrary salts and Initialization Vectors (IV) into the cipher stream in order to be recovered by NiFi or a follow-on system to decrypt these messages. 

For the existing KDFs, the salt format has not changed. 


The first 16 bytes of the input are the salt. On decryption, the salt is read in and combined with the password to derive the encryption key and IV. 

OpenSSL PKCS#5 v1.5 EVP_BytesToKey

OpenSSL allows for salted or unsalted key derivation. Unsalted key derivation is a security risk and is not recommended. If a salt is present, the first 8 bytes of the input are the ASCII string "Salted__" (0x53 61 6C 74 65 64 5F 5F) and the next 8 bytes are the ASCII-encoded salt. On decryption, the salt is read in and combined with the password to derive the encryption key and IV. If there is no salt header, the entire input is considered to be the cipher text. 

For new KDFs, each of which allow for non-deterministic IVs, the IV must be stored alongside the cipher text. This is not a vulnerability, as the IV is not required to be secret, but simply to be unique for messages encrypted using the same key to reduce the success of cryptographic attacks. For these KDFs, the output consists of the salt, followed by the salt delimiter, UTF-8 string "NiFiSALT" (0x4E 69 46 69 53 41 4C 54) and then the IV, followed by the IV delimiter, UTF-8 string "NiFiIV" (0x4E 69 46 69 49 56), followed by the cipher text. 

Bcrypt, Scrypt, PBKDF2



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