International Association for Cryptologic Research

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18:11 [Pub][ePrint] Demystifying incentives in the consensus computer, by Loi Luu and Jason Teutsch and Raghav Kulkarni and Prateek Saxena

  Bitcoin and similar cryptocurrencies are a massive network of

computational devices that maintain the robutness and correctness of the

computation done in the network. Cryptocurrency protocols, including Bitcoin and the

more recent Ethereum system, offer an additional feature that allows

currency users to specify a ``script\'\' or contract which is executed

collectively (via a consensus protocol) by the network. This feature

can be used for many new applications of cryptocurrencies

beyond simple cash transaction. Indeed, several efforts to develop decentralized applications

are underway and recent experimental efforts have proposed to port a

Linux OS to such a decentralized computational platform.

In this work, we study the security of computations on a cryptocurrency

network. We explain why the correctness of such computations is susceptible to

attacks that both waste network resources of honest miners as well as lead to

incorrect results. The essence of our arguments stems from a deeper

understanding of the incentive-incompatibility of maintaining a correct

blockchain. We explain this via a ill-fated choice called the {\\em verifier\'s

dilemma}, which suggests that rational miners are well-incentivized to accept

an unvalidated blockchain as correct, especially in next-generation

cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum that are Turing-complete. To explain which

classes of computation can be computed securely, we formulate a model of

computation we call the consensus verifiability. We propose a solution that

reduces the adversary\'s advantage substantially, thereby achieving near-ideal

incentive-compatibility for executing and verifying computation in our

consensus verifiability model. We further propose two different but

complementary approaches to implement our solution in real cryptocurrency

networks like Ethereum. We show the feasibility of such approaches for a set of

practical outsourced computation tasks as case studies.

18:11 [Pub][ePrint] Point-Function Obfuscation: A Framework and Generic Constructions, by Mihir Bellare and Igors Stepanovs

  We unify the many prior variants of point-function obfuscation via a definitional framework in which security is parameterized by a class of algorithms we call target generators, with different notions corresponding to different choices of this class. This leads to an elegant question, namely whether it is possible to provide a generic construction, meaning one that takes an arbitrary class of target generators and returns a point-function obfuscator secure for it. We answer this in the affirmative with three generic constructions, the first based on indistinguishability obfuscation, the second on deterministic public-key encryption and the third on universal computational extractors. By exploiting known constructions of the primitives assumed, we obtain a host of new point-function obfuscators, including many under standard assumptions.

18:11 [Pub][ePrint] Indistinguishability Obfuscation: from Approximate to Exact, by Nir Bitansky and Vinod Vaikuntanathan

  We show general transformations from subexponentially-secure approximate indistinguishability obfuscation (IO) where the obfuscated circuit agrees with the original circuit on a $1/2+\\epsilon$ fraction of inputs, into exact indistinguishability obfuscation where the

obfuscated circuit and the original circuit agree on all inputs (except for a negligible probability over the coin tosses of the obfuscator). As a step towards our results, which is of independent interest, we also obtain an approximate-to-exact transformation for functional encryption. At the core of our techniques is a method for ``fooling\'\' the obfuscator into giving us the correct answer, while preserving the indistinguishability-based security. This is achieved based on various types of secure computation protocols that can be obtained from different standard assumptions.

Put together with the recent results of Canetti, Kalai and Paneth (TCC 2015), Pass and Shelat (Eprint 2015), and Mahmoody, Mohammed and Nemathaji (Eprint 2015), we show how to convert indistinguishability obfuscation schemes in various ideal models into exact obfuscation schemes in the plain model.

18:11 [Pub][ePrint] Linear Overhead Robust MPC with Honest Majority Using Preprocessing, by Ashish Choudhury and Emmanuela Orsini and Arpita Patra and Nigel P. Smart

  We present a technique to achieve O(n) communication complexity per multiplication for a wide class of robust practical MPC protocols. Previously such a communication complexity was only known in the case of non-robust protocols in the full threshold, dishonest majority setting. In particular our technique applies to robust threshold computationally secure protocols in the case of t

22:30 [Job][New] PhD Position on Consent Management in Emerging Mobile and Pervasive Computing Systems, Technische Universit├Ąt Darmstadt, Germany.

  Applications are invited for a full-time PhD position in the Security in Information Technology (SIT) Research Group at Technische Universit├Ąt Darmstadt, Germany, under the direction of Prof. Dr. Michael Waidner.

The vacancy is within the newly established research training group \"Privacy and Trust for Mobile Users\", funded by DFG, the German Research Foundation.

We are looking for a candidate interested in working at the intersection of privacy engineering, identity management, applied cryptography, and machine learning, starting October 01, 2015.

More Information:

16:24 [Event][New] INTRUST 2015: The 7th International Conference on Trusted Systems

  Submission: 15 October 2015
Notification: 5 November 2015
From December 7 to December 8
Location: Beijing, China
More Information:

18:03 [Job][New] Scientist or Post-Doc Position, AIT Austrian Institute of Technology, Vienna, Austria

  We are looking for a research scientist or post-doc in cryptography to work on novel cryptographic concepts for emerging ICT domains (e.g. cloud computing or cyber physical systems). Ideally you have experience in fields like modern public-key cryptography, distributed cryptography, privacy enhancing technologies, or multi-party computation. You will be involved in a EU research project on identity management and research/improve cryptography for secure and privacy preserving cloud based identity management.

Further infos:

  • Direct job posting:

  • Project site (avail. soon):

  • AIT Digital Safety & Security Department:


18:02 [Event][New] Special issue on Recent Advances in Physical-Layer Security

  Submission: 15 October 2015
Notification: 15 January 2016
From June 1 to October 15
More Information:

18:02 [Event][New] Lightweight and Energy-Efficient Security Solutions for Mobile Computing De

  Submission: 14 September 2015
Notification: 14 November 2015
From June 1 to September 14
More Information:

15:16 [Event][New] CrossFyre: Intern. Workshop on Crypto, Robustness, and Provably Secure Schemes

  Submission: 4 September 2016
From November 2 to November 3
Location: Nijmegen, The Netherlands
More Information:

15:13 [Job][New] EU Coordinator and Researcher in Cryptography and Computer Security, Simula Research Laboratory, Norway

  Simula Research Laboratory in Norway seeks a researcher in cryptography or computer security for an initial two-year contract with possibility for further employment. The successful candidate will also be responsible for leading the process of applying for EU-grants under H2020. Previous involvement in EU projects and experience in building and maintaining consortia will count as a big plus.