The Noise Protocol Framework

Trevor Perrin

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The Noise Protocol Framework is a toolkit for 2-party secure-channel protocols. Noise is used by WhatsApp for client-server communication, by the WireGuard VPN protocol, and by the Lightning Network. In this talk I'll describe the rationale behind such a framework, and how you can use it to build simple, efficient, and customized secure-channel protocols.

Noise provides a simple pattern language and naming scheme for 2-party DH-based cryptographic handshakes, covering the different possibilities for client and/or server authentication, post/pre-specified peers, identity-hiding, and 0-RTT encryption. These patterns are easily compiled into linear sequences of cryptographic operations using your favorite ECDH, hash, and cipher functions. Extensions are in the works for additional cryptographic choices, e.g. post-quantum options for "hybrid forward-secrecy", as well as negotiation frameworks.


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