International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Paper: Strengthening Zero-Knowledge Protocols using Signatures

Juan A. Garay
Philip MacKenzie
Ke Yang
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Abstract: Recently there has been an interest in zero-knowledge protocols with stronger properties, such as concurrency, unbounded simulation soundness, non-malleability, and universal composability. In this paper, we show a novel technique to convert a large class of existing honest-verifier zero-knowledge protocols into ones with these stronger properties in the common reference string model. More precisely, our technique utilizes a signature scheme existentially unforgeable against adaptive chosen-message attacks, and transforms any $\Sigma$-protocol (which is honest-verifier zero-knowledge) into an unbounded simulation sound concurrent zero-knowledge protocol. We also introduce $\Omega$-protocols, a variant of $\Sigma$-protocols for which our technique further achieves the properties of non-malleability and/or universal composability. In addition to its conceptual simplicity, a main advantage of this new technique over previous ones is that it avoids the Cook-Levin theorem, which tends to be rather inefficient. Indeed, our technique allows for very efficient instantiation based on the security of some efficient signature schemes and standard number-theoretic assumptions. For instance, one instantiation of our technique yields a universally composable zero-knowledge protocol under the Strong RSA assumption, incurring an overhead of a small constant number of exponentiations, plus the generation of two signatures.
  title={Strengthening Zero-Knowledge Protocols using Signatures},
  booktitle={IACR Eprint archive},
  keywords={cryptographic protocols / zero knowledge, digital signatures},
  note={Extended abstract in Eurocrypt 2003 12279 received 27 Feb 2003, last revised 15 Aug 2003},
  author={Juan A. Garay and Philip MacKenzie and Ke Yang},