International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research


Jiafeng Xie


CASA: A Compact and Scalable Accelerator for Approximate Homomorphic Encryption
Approximate arithmetic-based homomorphic encryption (HE) scheme CKKS [CKKS17] is arguably the most suitable one for real-world data-privacy applications due to its wider computation range than other HE schemes such as BGV [BGV14], FV and BFV [Bra12, FV12]. However, the most crucial homomorphic operation of CKKS called key-switching induces a great amount of computational burden in actual deployment situations, and creates scalability challenges for hardware acceleration. In this paper, we present a novel Compact And Scalable Accelerator (CASA) for CKKS on the field-programmable gate array (FPGA) platform. The proposed CASA addresses the aforementioned computational and scalability challenges in homomorphic operations, including key-exchange, homomorphic multiplication, homomorphic addition, and rescaling.On the architecture layer, we propose a new design methodology for efficient acceleration of CKKS. We design this novel hardware architecture by carefully studying the homomorphic operation patterns and data dependency amongst the primitive oracles. The homomorphic operations are efficiently mapped into an accelerator with simple control and smooth operation, which brings benefits for scalable implementation and enhanced pipeline and parallel processing (even with the potential for further improvement).On the component layer, we carry out a detailed and extensive study and present novel micro-architectures for primitive function modules, including memory bank, number theoretic transform (NTT) module, modulus switching bank, and dyadic multiplication and accumulation.On the arithmetic layer, we develop a new partially reduction-free modular arithmetic technique to eliminate part of the reduction cost over different prime moduli within the moduli chain of the Residue Number System (RNS). The proposed structure can support arbitrary numbers of security primes of CKKS during key exchange, which offers better security options for adopting the scalable design methodology.As a proof-of-concept, we implement CASA on the FPGA platform and compare it with state-of-the-art designs. The implementation results showcase the superior performance of the proposed CASA in many aspects such as compact area, scalable architecture, and overall better area-time complexities.In particular, we successfully implement CASA on a mainstream resource-constrained Artix-7 FPGA. To the authors’ best knowledge, this is the first compact CKKS accelerator implemented on an Artix-7 device, e.g., CASA achieves a 10.8x speedup compared with the state-of-the-art CPU implementations (with power consumption of only 5.8%). Considering the power-delay product metric, CASA also achieves 138x and 105x improvement compared with the recent GPU implementation.