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Pre- SHA-3 Competition (2004-2007)

In 2004-2005 when cryptanalysis raised concerns about the security of the Government hash standard SHA-1, NIST issued Comments on Cryptanalytic Attacks on SHA-1 and held two public workshops as a response. These workshops were to assess the status of the NIST-approved hash algorithms, and to solicit public input on the Government hash algorithm policy and standard. As a result of these workshops, NIST decided to develop a new cryptographic hash algorithm for standardization through a public competition, and the new algorithm will be referred to as “SHA-3”. A tentative timeline for the competition, and a policy statement on the use of hash functions were published in 2006.

NIST issued a Federal Register Notice in January 2007 detailing the draft minimum acceptability requirements, submission requirements, and evaluation criteria for candidate hash algorithms for public comment. Based on the public feedback, NIST revised the requirements and evaluation criteria, issued a second Federal Register Notice to Call for a New Cryptographic Hash Algorithm (SHA-3) Family on November 2, 2007, and launched the “SHA-3” Cryptographic Hash Algorithm Competition. Details of the competition are available at www.nist.gov/hash-competition.