International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


James Howe


The Return of the SDitH
This paper presents a code-based signature scheme based on the well-known syndrome decoding (SD) problem. The scheme builds upon a recent line of research which uses the Multi-Party-Computation-in-the-Head (MPCitH) approach to construct efficient zero-knowledge proofs, such as Syndrome Decoding in the Head (SDitH), and builds signature schemes from them using the Fiat-Shamir transform. At the heart of our proposal is a new approach, Hypercube-MPCitH, to amplify the soundness of any MPC protocol that uses additive secret sharing. An MPCitH protocol with N parties can be repeated D times using parallel composition to reach the same soundness as a protocol run with N^D parties. However, the former comes with D times higher communication costs, often mainly contributed by the usage of D `auxiliary' states (which in general have a significantly bigger impact on size than random states). Instead of that, we begin by generating N^D shares, arranged into a D-dimensional hypercube of side N containing only one `auxiliary' state. We derive from this hypercube D sharings of size N which are used to run D instances of an N party MPC protocol. Hypercube-MPCitH leads to a protocol with 1/N^D soundness error, requiring N^D offline computation, but with only N*D online computation, and only one `auxiliary'. As the (potentially offline) share generation phase is generally inexpensive, this leads to trade-offs that are superior to just using parallel composition. Our novel method of share generation and aggregation not only improves certain MPCitH protocols in general but also shows in concrete improvements of signature schemes. Specifically, we apply it to the work of Feneuil, Joux, and Rivain (CRYPTO'22) on code-based signatures, and obtain a new signature scheme that achieves a 8.1x improvement in global runtime and a 30x improvement in online runtime for their shortest signatures size (8,481 Bytes). It is also possible to leverage the fact that most computations are offline to define parameter sets leading to smaller signatures: 6,784 Bytes for 26 ms offline and 5,689 Bytes for 320 ms offline. For NIST security level 1, online signature cost is around 3 million cycles (<1 ms on commodity processors), regardless of signature size.
Standard Lattice-Based Key Encapsulation on Embedded Devices
Lattice-based cryptography is one of the most promising candidates being considered to replace current public-key systems in the era of quantum computing. In 2016, Bos et al. proposed the key exchange scheme FrodoCCS, that is also a submission to the NIST post-quantum standardization process, modified as a key encapsulation mechanism (FrodoKEM). The security of the scheme is based on standard lattices and the learning with errors problem. Due to the large parameters, standard latticebased schemes have long been considered impractical on embedded devices. The FrodoKEM proposal actually comes with parameters that bring standard lattice-based cryptography within reach of being feasible on constrained devices. In this work, we take the final step of efficiently implementing the scheme on a low-cost FPGA and microcontroller devices and thus making conservative post-quantum cryptography practical on small devices. Our FPGA implementation of the decapsulation (the computationally most expensive operation) needs 7,220 look-up tables (LUTs), 3,549 flip-flops (FFs), a single DSP, and only 16 block RAM modules. The maximum clock frequency is 162 MHz and it takes 20.7 ms for the execution of the decapsulation. Our microcontroller implementation has a 66% reduced peak stack usage in comparison to the reference implementation and needs 266 ms for key pair generation, 284 ms for encapsulation, and 286 ms for decapsulation. Our results contribute to the practical evaluation of a post-quantum standardization candidate.