## CryptoDB

### Jesper Buus Nielsen

#### Publications

**Year**

**Venue**

**Title**

2022

EUROCRYPT

Universally Composable Subversion-Resilient Cryptography
Abstract

Subversion attacks undermine security of cryptographic protocols by replacing a legitimate honest party's implementation with one that leaks information in an undetectable manner. An important limitation of all currently known techniques for designing cryptographic protocols with security against subversion attacks is that they do not automatically guarantee security in the realistic setting where a protocol session may run concurrently with other protocols.
We remedy this situation by providing a foundation of reverse firewalls (Mironov and Stephens-Davidowitz, EUROCRYPT'15) in the universal composability (UC) framework (Canetti, FOCS'01 and J. ACM'20). More in details, our contributions are threefold:
- We generalize the UC framework to the setting where each party consists of a core (which has secret inputs and is in charge of generating protocol messages) and a firewall (which has no secrets and sanitizes the outgoing/incoming communication from/to the core). Both the core and the firewall can be subject to different flavors of corruption, modeling different kinds of subversion attacks.
For instance, we capture the setting where a subverted core looks like the honest core to any efficient test, yet it may leak secret information via covert channels (which we call specious subversion).
- We show how to sanitize UC commitments and UC coin tossing against specious subversion, under the DDH assumption.
- We show how to sanitize the classical GMW compiler (Goldreich, Micali and Wigderson, STOC 1987) for turning MPC with security in the presence of semi-honest adversaries into MPC with security in the presence of malicious adversaries. This yields a completeness theorem for maliciously secure MPC in the presence of specious subversion.
Additionally, all our sanitized protocols are transparent, in the sense that communicating with a sanitized core looks indistinguishable from communicating with an honest core. Thanks to the composition theorem, our methodology allows, for the first time, to design subversion-resilient protocols by sanitizing different sub-components in a modular way.

2021

JOFC

High-Performance Multi-party Computation for Binary Circuits Based on Oblivious Transfer
Abstract

We present a unified view of the two-party and multi-party computation protocols based on oblivious transfer first outlined in Nielsen et al. (CRYPTO 2012) and Larraia et al. (CRYPTO 2014). We present a number of modifications and improvements to these earlier presentations, as well as full proofs of the entire protocol. Improvements include a unified pre-processing and online MAC methodology, mechanisms to pass between different MAC variants and fixing a minor bug in the protocol of Larraia et al. in relation to a selective failure attack. It also fixes a minor bug in Nielsen et al. resulting from using Jensen’s inequality in the wrong direction in an analysis.

2021

EUROCRYPT

TARDIS: A Foundation of Time-Lock Puzzles in UC
📺
Abstract

Time-based primitives like time-lock puzzles (TLP) are finding widespread use in practical protocols, partially due to the surge of interest in the blockchain space where TLPs and related primitives are perceived to solve many problems. Unfortunately, the security claims are often shaky or plainly wrong since these primitives are used under composition. One reason is that TLPs are inherently not UC secure and time is tricky to model and use in the UC model. On the other hand, just specifying standalone notions of the intended task, left alone correctly using standalone notions like non-malleable TLPs only, might be hard or impossible for the given task. And even when possible a standalone secure primitive is harder to apply securely in practice afterwards as its behavior under composition is unclear. The ideal solution would be a model of TLPs in the UC framework to allow simple modular proofs. In this paper we provide a foundation for proving composable security of practical protocols using time-lock puzzles and related timed primitives in the UC model. We construct UC-secure TLPs based on random oracles and show that using random oracles is necessary. In order to prove security, we provide a simple and abstract way to reason about time in UC protocols. Finally, we demonstrate the usefulness of this foundation by constructing applications that are interesting in their own right, such as UC-secure two-party computation with output-independent abort.

2021

CRYPTO

You Only Speak Once: Secure MPC with Stateless Ephemeral Roles
📺
Abstract

The inherent difficulty of maintaining stateful environments over long periods of time gave rise to the paradigm of serverless computing, where mostly-stateless components are deployed on demand to handle computation tasks, and are teared down once their task is complete. Serverless architecture could offer the added benefit of improved resistance to targeted denial-of-service attacks, by hiding from the attacker the physical machines involved in the protocol until after they complete their work. Realizing such protection, however, requires that the protocol only uses stateless parties, where each party sends only one message and never needs to speaks again. Perhaps the most famous example of this style of protocols is the Nakamoto consensus protocol used in Bitcoin: A peer can win the right to produce the next block by running a local lottery (mining), all while staying covert. Once the right has been won, it is executed by sending a single message. After that, the physical entity never needs to send more messages.
We refer to this as the You-Only-Speak-Once (YOSO) property, and initiate the formal study of it within a new model that we call the YOSO model. Our model is centered around the notion of roles, which are stateless parties that can only send a single message. Crucially, our modelling separates the protocol design, that only uses roles, from the role-assignment mechanism, that assigns roles to actual physical entities. This separation enables studying these two aspects separately, and our YOSO model in this work only deals with the protocol-design aspect.
We describe several techniques for achieving YOSO MPC; both computational and information theoretic. Our protocols are synchronous and provide guaranteed output delivery (which is important for application domains such as blockchains), assuming honest majority of roles in every time step. We describe a practically efficient computationally-secure protocol, as well as a proof-of-concept information theoretically secure protocol.

2021

TCC

Random-Index PIR and Applications
📺
Abstract

Private information retrieval (PIR) lets a client retrieve an entry from a database without the server learning which entry was retrieved. Here we study a weaker variant that we call random-index PIR (RPIR), where the retrieved index is an output rather than an input of the protocol, and is chosen at random. RPIR is clearly weaker than PIR, but it suffices for some interesting applications and may be realized more efficiently than full-blown PIR.
We report here on two lines of work, both tied to RPIR but otherwise largely unrelated. The first line of work studies RPIR as a primitive on its own. Perhaps surprisingly, we show that RPIR is in fact equivalent to PIR when there are no restrictions on the number of communication rounds. On the other hand, RPIR can be implemented in a “noninteractive” setting (with preprocessing), which is clearly impossible for PIR. For two-server RPIR we show a truly noninteractive solution, offering information-theoretic security without any pre-processing.
The other line of work, which was the original motivation for our work, uses RPIR to improve on the recent work of Benhamouda et al. (TCC’20) for maintaining secret values on public blockchains. Their solution depends on a method for selecting many random public keys from a PKI while hiding most of the selected keys from an adversary. However, the method they proposed is vulnerable to a double-dipping attack, limiting its resilience. Here we observe that an RPIR protocol, where the client is implemented via secure MPC, can eliminate that vulnerability. We thus get a secrets-on-blockchain protocol (and more generally large-scale MPC), resilient to any fraction f < 1/2 of corrupted parties, resolving the main open problem left from the work of Benhamouda et al.
As the client in this solution is implemented via secure MPC, it really brings home the need to make it as efficient as possible. We thus strive to explore whatever efficiency gains we can get by using RPIR rather than PIR. We achieve more gains by using batch RPIR where multiple indexes are retrieved at once. Lastly, we observe that this application can make do with a weaker security guarantee than full RPIR, and show that this weaker variant can be realized even more efficiently. We discuss one protocol in particular, that may be attractive for practical implementations.

2020

EUROCRYPT

Lower Bounds for Leakage-Resilient Secret Sharing
📺
Abstract

Threshold secret sharing allows a dealer to split a secret into $n$ shares such that any authorized subset of cardinality at least $t$ of those shares efficiently reveals the secret, while at the same time any unauthorized subset of cardinality less than $t$ contains no information about the secret. Leakage-resilience additionally requires that the secret remains hidden even if one is given a bounded amount of additional leakage from every share.
In this work, we study leakage-resilient secret sharing schemes and prove a lower bound on the share size and the required amount randomness of any information-theoretically secure scheme.
We prove that for any information-theoretically secure leakage-resilient secret sharing scheme either the amount of randomness across all shares or the share size has to be linear in $n$.
More concretely, for a secret sharing scheme with $p$-bit long shares, $\ell$-bit leakage per share, where $\widehat{t}$ shares uniquely define the remaining $n - \widehat{t}$ shares, it has to hold that $p \ge \frac{\ell (n - t)}{\widehat{t}}$.
We use this lower bound to gain further insights into a question that was recently posed by Benhamouda et al. (CRYPTO'18), who ask to what extend existing regular secret sharing schemes already provide protection against leakage.
The authors proved that Shamir's secret sharing is $1$-bit leakage-resilient for reconstruction thresholds $t \geq 0.85n$ and conjectured that it is also $1$-bit leakage-resilient for any other threshold that is a constant fraction of the total number of shares.
We do not disprove their conjecture, but show that it is the best one could possibly hope for.
Concretely, we show that for large enough $n$ and any constant $0< c < 1$ it holds that Shamir's secret sharing scheme is \emph{not} leakage-resilient for $t \leq \frac{cn}{\log n}$.
In contrast to the setting with information-theoretic security, we show that our lower bound does not hold in the computational setting.
That is, we show how to construct a leakage-resilient secret sharing scheme in the random oracle model that is secure against computationally bounded adversaries and violates the lower bound stated above.

2020

CRYPTO

Reverse Firewalls for Actively Secure MPCs
📺
Abstract

Reverse firewalls were introduced at Eurocrypt 2015 by Miro-nov and Stephens-Davidowitz, as a method for protecting cryptographic protocols against attacks on the devices of the honest parties. In a nutshell: a reverse firewall is placed outside of a device and its goal is to ``sanitize'' the messages sent by it, in such a way that a malicious device cannot leak its secrets to the outside world. It is typically assumed that the cryptographic devices are attacked in a ``functionality-preserving way'' (i.e.~informally speaking, the functionality of the protocol remains unchanged under this attacks).
In their paper, Mironov and Stephens-Davidowitz construct a protocol for passively-secure two-party computations with firewalls, leaving extension of this result to stronger models as an open question.
In this paper, we address this problem by constructing a protocol for secure computation with firewalls that has two main advantages over the original protocol from Eurocrypt 2015. Firstly, it is a \emph{multi}party computation protocol (i.e.~it works for an arbitrary number $n$ of the parties, and not just for $2$). Secondly, it is secure in much stronger corruption settings, namely in the \emph{actively corruption model}. More precisely: we consider an adversary that can fully corrupt up to $n-1$ parties, while the remaining parties are corrupt in a functionality-preserving way.
Our core techniques are: malleable commitments and malleable non-interactive zero-knowledge, which in particular allow us to create a novel protocol for multiparty augmented coin-tossing into the well with reverse firewalls (that is based on a protocol of Lindell from Crypto 2001).

2020

JOFC

Continuously Non-malleable Codes in the Split-State Model
Abstract

Non-malleable codes (Dziembowski et al., ICS’10 and J. ACM’18) are a natural relaxation of error correcting/detecting codes with useful applications in cryptography. Informally, a code is non-malleable if an adversary trying to tamper with an encoding of a message can only leave it unchanged or modify it to the encoding of an unrelated value. This paper introduces continuous non-malleability, a generalization of standard non-malleability where the adversary is allowed to tamper continuously with the same encoding. This is in contrast to the standard definition of non-malleable codes, where the adversary can only tamper a single time. The only restriction is that after the first invalid codeword is ever generated, a special self-destruct mechanism is triggered and no further tampering is allowed; this restriction can easily be shown to be necessary. We focus on the split-state model, where an encoding consists of two parts and the tampering functions can be arbitrary as long as they act independently on each part. Our main contributions are outlined below. We show that continuous non-malleability in the split-state model is impossible without relying on computational assumptions. We construct a computationally secure split-state code satisfying continuous non-malleability in the common reference string (CRS) model. Our scheme can be instantiated assuming the existence of collision-resistant hash functions and (doubly enhanced) trapdoor permutations, but we also give concrete instantiations based on standard number-theoretic assumptions. We revisit the application of non-malleable codes to protecting arbitrary cryptographic primitives against related-key attacks. Previous applications of non-malleable codes in this setting required perfect erasures and the adversary to be restricted in memory. We show that continuously non-malleable codes allow to avoid these restrictions.

2019

EUROCRYPT

Continuous Non-Malleable Codes in the 8-Split-State Model
📺
Abstract

Non-malleable codes (NMCs), introduced by Dziembowski, Pietrzak and Wichs [20], provide a useful message integrity guarantee in situations where traditional error-correction (and even error-detection) is impossible; for example, when the attacker can completely overwrite the encoded message. NMCs have emerged as a fundamental object at the intersection of coding theory and cryptography. In particular, progress in the study of non-malleable codes and the related notion of non-malleable extractors has led to new insights and progress on even more fundamental problems like the construction of multi-source randomness extractors. A large body of the recent work has focused on various constructions of non-malleable codes in the split-state model. Many variants of NMCs have been introduced in the literature, e.g., strong NMCs, super strong NMCs and continuous NMCs. The most general, and hence also the most useful notion among these is that of continuous non-malleable codes, that allows for continuous tampering by the adversary. We present the first efficient information-theoretically secure continuously non-malleable code in the constant split-state model. We believe that our main technical result could be of independent interest and some of the ideas could in future be used to make progress on other related questions.

2019

CRYPTO

Communication Lower Bounds for Statistically Secure MPC, With or Without Preprocessing
📺
Abstract

We prove a lower bound on the communication complexity of unconditionally secure multiparty computation, both in the standard model with
$$n=2t+1$$
parties of which t are corrupted, and in the preprocessing model with
$$n=t+1$$
. In both cases, we show that for any
$$g \in \mathbb {N}$$
there exists a Boolean circuit C with g gates, where any secure protocol implementing C must communicate
$$\varOmega (n g)$$
bits, even if only passive and statistical security is required. The results easily extends to constructing similar circuits over any fixed finite field. This shows that for all sizes of circuits, the O(n) overhead of all known protocols when t is maximal is inherent. It also shows that security comes at a price: the circuit we consider could namely be computed among n parties with communication only O(g) bits if no security was required. Our results extend to the case where the threshold t is suboptimal. For the honest majority case, this shows that the known optimizations via packed secret-sharing can only be obtained if one accepts that the threshold is
$$t= (1/2 - c)n$$
for a constant c. For the honest majority case, we also show an upper bound that matches the lower bound up to a constant factor (existing upper bounds are a factor
$$\lg n$$
off for Boolean circuits).

2019

CRYPTO

Stronger Leakage-Resilient and Non-Malleable Secret Sharing Schemes for General Access Structures
📺
Abstract

In this work we present a collection of compilers that take secret sharing schemes for an arbitrary access structure as input and produce either leakage-resilient or non-malleable secret sharing schemes for the same access structure. A leakage-resilient secret sharing scheme hides the secret from an adversary, who has access to an unqualified set of shares, even if the adversary additionally obtains some size-bounded leakage from all other secret shares. A non-malleable secret sharing scheme guarantees that a secret that is reconstructed from a set of tampered shares is either equal to the original secret or completely unrelated. To the best of our knowledge we present the first generic compiler for leakage-resilient secret sharing for general access structures. In the case of non-malleable secret sharing, we strengthen previous definitions, provide separations between them, and construct a non-malleable secret sharing scheme for general access structures that fulfills the strongest definition with respect to independent share tampering functions. More precisely, our scheme is secure against concurrent tampering: The adversary is allowed to (non-adaptively) tamper the shares multiple times, and in each tampering attempt can freely choose the qualified set of shares to be used by the reconstruction algorithm to reconstruct the tampered secret. This is a strong analogue of the multiple-tampering setting for split-state non-malleable codes and extractors.We show how to use leakage-resilient and non-malleable secret sharing schemes to construct leakage-resilient and non-malleable threshold signatures. Classical threshold signatures allow to distribute the secret key of a signature scheme among a set of parties, such that certain qualified subsets can sign messages. We construct threshold signature schemes that remain secure even if an adversary leaks from or tampers with all secret shares.

2018

CRYPTO

Yes, There is an Oblivious RAM Lower Bound!
📺 ★
Abstract

An Oblivious RAM (ORAM) introduced by Goldreich and Ostrovsky [JACM’96] is a (possibly randomized) RAM, for which the memory access pattern reveals no information about the operations performed. The main performance metric of an ORAM is the bandwidth overhead, i.e., the multiplicative factor extra memory blocks that must be accessed to hide the operation sequence. In their seminal paper introducing the ORAM, Goldreich and Ostrovsky proved an amortized
$$\varOmega (\lg n)$$
bandwidth overhead lower bound for ORAMs with memory size n. Their lower bound is very strong in the sense that it applies to the “offline” setting in which the ORAM knows the entire sequence of operations ahead of time.However, as pointed out by Boyle and Naor [ITCS’16] in the paper “Is there an oblivious RAM lower bound?”, there are two caveats with the lower bound of Goldreich and Ostrovsky: (1) it only applies to “balls in bins” algorithms, i.e., algorithms where the ORAM may only shuffle blocks around and not apply any sophisticated encoding of the data, and (2), it only applies to statistically secure constructions. Boyle and Naor showed that removing the “balls in bins” assumption would result in super linear lower bounds for sorting circuits, a long standing open problem in circuit complexity. As a way to circumventing this barrier, they also proposed a notion of an “online” ORAM, which is an ORAM that remains secure even if the operations arrive in an online manner. They argued that most known ORAM constructions work in the online setting as well.Our contribution is an
$$\varOmega (\lg n)$$
lower bound on the bandwidth overhead of any online ORAM, even if we require only computational security and allow arbitrary representations of data, thus greatly strengthening the lower bound of Goldreich and Ostrovsky in the online setting. Our lower bound applies to ORAMs with memory size n and any word size
$$r \ge 1$$
. The bound therefore asymptotically matches the known upper bounds when
$$r = \varOmega (\lg ^2 n)$$
.

2005

ASIACRYPT

2005

EUROCRYPT

2003

CRYPTO

2002

CRYPTO

2002

CRYPTO

2002

CRYPTO

#### Program Committees

- TCC 2021
- TCC 2020
- Eurocrypt 2018 (Program chair)
- Eurocrypt 2017 (Program chair)
- PKC 2016
- TCC 2015 (Program chair)
- Asiacrypt 2014
- PKC 2014
- Crypto 2013
- Eurocrypt 2013
- TCC 2012
- Asiacrypt 2011
- PKC 2011
- Crypto 2011
- Asiacrypt 2010
- Crypto 2010
- Crypto 2009
- PKC 2009
- PKC 2008
- Asiacrypt 2007
- Eurocrypt 2007
- TCC 2006
- Asiacrypt 2004

#### Coauthors

- Divesh Aggarwal (2)
- Jesús F. Almansa (1)
- Carsten Baum (1)
- Rikke Bendlin (1)
- Sai Sheshank Burra (2)
- Ran Canetti (1)
- Ignacio Cascudo (2)
- Suvradip Chakraborty (2)
- Ronald Cramer (1)
- Ivan Damgård (24)
- Bernardo Machado David (2)
- Bernardo David (2)
- Yvo Desmedt (1)
- Nico Döttling (2)
- Rafael Dowsley (1)
- Frédéric Dupuis (2)
- Stefan Dziembowski (1)
- Antonio Faonio (3)
- Sebastian Faust (5)
- Matthias Fitzi (2)
- Tore Kasper Frederiksen (3)
- Martin Geisler (2)
- Craig Gentry (2)
- Satrajit Ghosh (1)
- Irene Giacomelli (2)
- Shai Halevi (2)
- Danny Harnik (1)
- Carmit Hazay (2)
- Martin Hirt (3)
- Pavel Hubáček (1)
- Yuval Ishai (2)
- Thomas P. Jakobsen (1)
- Thomas Pelle Jakobsen (1)
- Eike Kiltz (1)
- Hugo Krawczyk (2)
- Mikkel Krøigaard (2)
- Eyal Kushilevitz (1)
- Enrique Larraia (1)
- Kasper Green Larsen (2)
- Bernardo Magri (3)
- Sigurd Meldgaard (1)
- Peter Bro Miltersen (1)
- Pratyay Mukherjee (3)
- Michael Nielsen (1)
- Tobias Nilges (1)
- Peter Sebastian Nordholt (6)
- Maciej Obremski (2)
- Sabine Oechsner (1)
- Claudio Orlandi (8)
- Emmanuela Orsini (1)
- Rafail Ostrovsky (1)
- Antigoni Polychroniadou (1)
- Bartosz Przydatek (1)
- Erick Purwanto (2)
- Tal Rabin (1)
- Samuel Ranellucci (3)
- Michael Raskin (1)
- João Ribeiro (1)
- Alon Rosen (1)
- Adi Rosén (1)
- Louis Salvail (2)
- Peter Scholl (1)
- Mark Simkin (2)
- Nigel P. Smart (1)
- Adam Smith (1)
- Tomas Toft (1)
- Nikos Triandopoulos (1)
- Roberto Trifiletti (2)
- Daniele Venturi (7)
- Daniel Wichs (2)
- Sophia Yakoubov (2)
- Angela Zottarel (4)