International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research

CryptoDB

Boaz Barak

Publications

Year
Venue
Title
2019
EUROCRYPT
Sum-of-Squares Meets Program Obfuscation, Revisited
We develop attacks on the security of variants of pseudo-random generators computed by quadratic polynomials. In particular we give a general condition for breaking the one-way property of mappings where every output is a quadratic polynomial (over the reals) of the input. As a corollary, we break the degree-2 candidates for security assumptions recently proposed for constructing indistinguishability obfuscation by Ananth, Jain and Sahai (ePrint 2018) and Agrawal (ePrint 2018). We present conjectures that would imply our attacks extend to a wider variety of instances, and in particular offer experimental evidence that they break assumption of Lin-Matt (ePrint 2018).Our algorithms use semidefinite programming, and in particular, results on low-rank recovery (Recht, Fazel, Parrilo 2007) and matrix completion (Gross 2009).
2018
EUROCRYPT
2017
JOFC
2014
EUROCRYPT
2014
TCC
2011
CRYPTO
2011
JOFC
2010
EUROCRYPT
2009
CRYPTO
2008
EUROCRYPT
2008
EPRINT
Merkle Puzzles are Optimal
We prove that every key exchange protocol in the random oracle model in which the honest users make at most n queries to the oracle can be broken by an adversary making O(n^2) queries to the oracle. This improves on the previous Omega(n^6) query attack given by Impagliazzo and Rudich (STOC '89). Our bound is optimal up to a constant factor since Merkle (CACM '78) gave an n query key exchange protocol in this model that cannot be broken by an adversary making o(n^2) queries.
2008
EPRINT
Public Key Cryptography from Different Assumptions
Boaz Barak Avi Wigderson
We construct a new public key encryption based on two assumptions: 1) One can obtain a pseudorandom generator with small locality by connecting the outputs to the inputs using any sufficiently good unbalanced expander. 2) It is hard to distinguish between a random graph that is such an expander and a random graph where a (planted) random logarithmic-sized subset S of the outputs is connected to fewer than |S| inputs. The validity and strength of the assumptions raise interesting new algorithmic and pseudorandomness questions, and we explore their relation to the current state-of-art.
2008
EPRINT
Lower Bounds on Signatures From Symmetric Primitives
We show that every construction of one-time signature schemes from a random oracle achieves black-box security at most 2^{(1+o(1))q}, where q is the total number of oracle queries asked by the key generation, signing, and verification algorithms. That is, any such scheme can be broken with probability close to 1 by a (computationally unbounded) adversary making 2^{(1+o(1))q} queries to the oracle. This is tight up to a constant factor in the number of queries, since a simple modification of Lamport's one-time signatures (Lamport '79) achieves 2^{(0.812-o(1))q} black-box security using q queries to the oracle. Our result extends (with a loss of a constant factor in the number of queries) also to the random permutation and ideal-cipher oracles. Since the symmetric primitives (e.g. block ciphers, hash functions, and message authentication codes) can be constructed by a constant number of queries to the mentioned oracles, as corollary we get lower bounds on the efficiency of signature schemes from symmetric primitives when the construction is black-box. This can be taken as evidence of an inherent efficiency gap between signature schemes and symmetric primitives.
2007
EPRINT
Secure Computation Without Authentication
Research on secure multiparty computation has mainly concentrated on the case where the parties can authenticate each other and the communication between them. This work addresses the question of what security can be guaranteed when authentication is not available. We consider a completely unauthenticated setting, where all messages sent by the parties may be tampered with and modified by the adversary without the honest parties being able to detect this fact. In this model, it is not possible to achieve the same level of security as in the authenticated-channel setting. Nevertheless, we show that meaningful security guarantees can be provided: Essentially, all the adversary can do is to partition the network into disjoint sets, where in each set the computation is secure in itself, and also independent of the computation in the other sets. In the basic setting our construction provides, for the first time, non-trivial security guarantees in a model with no set-up assumptions whatsoever. We also obtain similar results while guaranteeing universal composability, in some variants of the common reference string model. Finally, our protocols can be used to provide conceptually simple and unified solutions to a number of problems that were studied separately in the past, including password-based authenticated key exchange and non-malleable commitments. As an application of our results, we study the question of constructing secure protocols in partially-authenticated networks, where some of the links are authenticated and some are not (as is the case in most networks today).
2006
EPRINT
Concurrent Non-Malleable Zero Knowledge
We provide the first construction of a concurrent and non-malleable zero knowledge argument for every language in NP. We stress that our construction is in the plain model with no common random string, trusted parties, or super-polynomial simulation. That is, we construct a zero knowledge protocol $\Pi$ such that for every polynomial-time adversary that can adaptively and concurrently schedule polynomially many executions of $\Pi$, and corrupt some of the verifiers and some of the provers in these sessions, there is a polynomial-time simulator that can simulate a transcript of the entire execution, along with the witnesses for all statements proven by a corrupt prover to an honest verifier. Our security model is the traditional model for concurrent zero knowledge, where the statements to be proven by the honest provers are fixed in advance and do not depend on the previous history (but can be correlated with each other); corrupted provers, of course, can chose the statements adaptively. We also prove that there exists some functionality F (a combination of zero knowledge and oblivious transfer) such that it is impossible to obtain a concurrent non-malleable protocol for F in this model. Previous impossibility results for composable protocols ruled out existence of protocols for a wider class of functionalities (including zero knowledge!) but only if these protocols were required to remain secure when executed concurrently with arbitrarily chosen different protocols (Lindell, FOCS 2003) or if these protocols were required to remain secure when the honest parties' inputs in each execution are chosen adaptively based on the results of previous executions (Lindell, TCC 2004). We obtain an $\Tilde{O}(n)$-round protocol under the assumption that one-to-one one-way functions exist. This can be improved to $\Tilde{O}(k\log n)$ rounds under the assumption that there exist $k$-round statistically hiding commitment schemes. Our protocol is a black-box zero knowledge protocol.
2005
CRYPTO
2005
EPRINT
A model and architecture for pseudo-random generation with applications to /dev/random
Boaz Barak Shai Halevi
We present a formal model and a simple architecture for robust pseudorandom generation that ensures resilience in the face of an observer with partial knowledge/control of the generator's entropy source. Our model and architecture have the following properties: 1 Resilience: The generator's output looks random to an observer with no knowledge of the internal state. This holds even if that observer has complete control over data that is used to refresh the internal state. 2 Forward security: Past output of the generator looks random to an observer, even if the observer learns the internal state at a later time. 3 Backward security/Break-in recovery: Future output of the generator looks random, even to an observer with knowledge of the current state, provided that the generator is refreshed with data of sufficient entropy. Architectures such as above were suggested before. This work differs from previous attempts in that we present a formal model for robust pseudo-random generation, and provide a formal proof within this model for the security of our architecture. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt at a rigorous model for this problem. Our formal modeling advocates the separation of the *entropy extraction* phase from the *output generation* phase. We argue that the former is information-theoretic in nature, and could therefore rely on combinatorial and statistical tools rather than on cryptography. On the other hand, we show that the latter can be implemented using any standard (non-robust) cryptographic PRG. We also discuss the applicability of our architecture for applications such as /dev/(u)random in Linux and pseudorandom generation on smartcards.
2005
EPRINT
How To Play Almost Any Mental Game Over The Net --- Concurrent Composition via Super-Polynomial Simulation
Boaz Barak Amit Sahai
We construct a secure protocol for any multi-party functionality that remains secure (under a relaxed definition of security) when executed concurrently with multiple copies of itself and other protocols. We stress that we do *not* use any assumptions on existence of trusted parties, common reference string, honest majority or synchronicity of the network. The relaxation of security, introduced by Prabhakaran and Sahai (STOC '04), is obtained by allowing the ideal-model simulator to run in *quai-polynomial* (as opposed to polynomial) time. Quasi-polynomial simulation suffices to ensure security for most applications of multi-party computation. Furthermore, Lindell (FOCS '03, TCC' 04) recently showed that such a protocol is *impossible* to obtain under the more standard definition of *polynomial-time* simulation by an ideal adversary. Our construction is the first such protocol under reasonably standard cryptographic assumptions. That is, existence of a hash function collection that is collision resistent with respect to circuits of subexponential size, and existence of trapdoor permutations that are secure with respect to circuits of quasi-polynomial size. We introduce a new technique: ``protocol condensing''. That is, taking a protocol that has strong security properties but requires *super-polynomial* communication and computation, and then transforming it into a protocol with *polynomial* communication and computation, that still inherits the strong security properties of the original protocol. Our result is obtained by combining this technique with previous techniques of Canetti, Lindell, Ostrovsky, and Sahai (STOC '02) and Pass (STOC '04).
2005
EPRINT
Derandomization in Cryptography
We give two applications of Nisan--Wigderson-type ("non-cryptographic") pseudorandom generators in cryptography. Specifically, assuming the existence of an appropriate NW-type generator, we construct: A one-message witness-indistinguishable proof system for every language in NP, based on any trapdoor permutation. This proof system does not assume a shared random string or any setup assumption, so it is actually an "NP proof system." A noninteractive bit commitment scheme based on any one-way function. The specific NW-type generator we need is a hitting set generator fooling nondeterministic circuits. It is known how to construct such a generator if ETIME = DTIME(2^O(n)) has a function of nondeterministic circuit complexity 2^\Omega(n) (Miltersen and Vinodchandran, FOCS `99). Our witness-indistinguishable proofs are obtained by using the NW-type generator to derandomize the ZAPs of Dwork and Naor (FOCS `00). To our knowledge, this is the first construction of an NP proof system achieving a secrecy property. Our commitment scheme is obtained by derandomizing the interactive commitment scheme of Naor (J. Cryptology, 1991). Previous constructions of noninteractive commitment schemes were only known under incomparable assumptions.
2004
TCC
2004
EPRINT
Protocol Initialization for the Framework of Universal Composability
Universally composable protocols (Canetti, FOCS 2000) are cryptographic protocols that remain secure even when run concurrently with arbitrary other protocols. Thus, universally composable protocols can be run in modern networks, like the Internet, and their security is guaranteed. However, the definition of universal composition actually assumes that each execution of the protocol is assigned a unique session identifier, and furthermore, that this identifier is known to all the participating parties. In addition, all universally composable protocols assume that the set of participating parties and the specification of the protocol to be run are a-priori agreed upon and known to all parties. In a decentralized network like the Internet, this setup information must be securely generated by the parties themselves. In this note we formalize the setup problem and show how to securely realize it with a simple and highly efficient protocol.
2004
EPRINT
Lower Bounds for Non-Black-Box Zero Knowledge
We show new lower bounds and impossibility results for general (possibly *non-black-box*) zero-knowledge proofs and arguments. Our main results are that, under reasonable complexity assumptions: 1. There does not exist a two-round zero-knowledge *proof* system with perfect completeness for an NP-complete language. The previous impossibility result for two-round zero knowledge, by Goldreich and Oren (J. Cryptology, 1994) was only for the case of *auxiliary-input* zero-knowledge proofs and arguments. 2. There does not exist a constant-round zero-knowledge *strong* proof or argument of knowledge (as defined by Goldreich (2001)) for a nontrivial language. 3. There does not exist a constant-round public-coin *proof* system for a nontrivial language that is *resettable zero knowledge*. This result also extends to "bounded-resettable" zero knowledge, in which the number of resets is a priori bounded by a polynomial in the input length and prover-to-verifier communication. In contrast, we show that under reasonable assumptions, there does exist such a (computationally sound) *argument* system that is bounded-resettable zero knowledge. The complexity assumptions we use are not commonly used in cryptography. However, in all cases, we show that assumptions similar to ours are necessary for the above results. Most previously known lower bounds, such as those of Goldreich and Krawczyk (SIAM J. Computing, 1996), were only for *black-box* zero knowledge. However, a result of Barak (FOCS 2001) shows that many (or even most) of these black-box lower bounds do *not* extend to the case of general zero knowledge.
2003
CHES
2003
CRYPTO
2002
EPRINT
Strict Polynomial-time in Simulation and Extraction
Boaz Barak Yehuda Lindell
The notion of efficient computation is usually identified in cryptography and complexity with (strict) probabilistic polynomial time. However, until recently, in order to obtain *constant-round* zero-knowledge proofs and proofs of knowledge, one had to allow simulators and knowledge-extractors to run in time that is only polynomial *on the average* (i.e., *expected* polynomial time). Recently Barak gave the first constant-round zero-knowledge argument with a *strict* (in contrast to expected) polynomial-time simulator. The simulator in his protocol is a *non-black-box* simulator (i.e., it makes inherent use of the description of the *code* of the verifier). In this paper, we further address the question of strict polynomial-time in constant-round zero-knowledge proofs and arguments of knowledge. First, we show that there exists a constant-round zero-knowledge *argument of knowledge* with a *strict* polynomial-time *knowledge extractor*. As in the simulator of Barak's zero-knowledge protocol, the extractor for our argument of knowledge is not black-box and makes inherent use of the code of the prover. On the negative side, we show that non-black-box techniques are *essential* for both strict polynomial-time simulation and extraction. That is, we show that no (non-trivial) constant-round zero-knowledge proof or argument can have a strict polynomial-time *black-box* simulator. Similarly, we show that no (non-trivial) constant-round zero-knowledge proof or argument of knowledge can have a strict polynomial-time *black-box* knowledge extractor.
2001
CRYPTO
2001
EPRINT
Resettably-Sound Zero-Knowledge and its Applications
Resettably-sound proofs and arguments remain sound even when the prover can reset the verifier, and so force it to use the same random coins in repeated executions of the protocol. We show that resettably-sound zero-knowledge {\em arguments} for NP exist if collision-resistant hash functions exist. In contrast, resettably-sound zero-knowledge {\em proofs} are possible only for languages in P/poly. We present two applications of resettably-sound zero-knowledge arguments. First, we construct resettable zero-knowledge arguments of knowledge for NP, using a natural relaxation of the definition of arguments (and proofs) of knowledge. We note that, under the standard definition of proofs of knowledge, it is impossible to obtain resettable zero-knowledge arguments of knowledge for languages outside BPP. Second, we construct a constant-round resettable zero-knowledge argument for NP in the public-key model, under the assumption that collision-resistant hash functions exist. This improves upon the sub-exponential hardness assumption required by previous constructions. We emphasize that our results use non-black-box zero-knowledge simulations. Indeed, we show that some of the results are {\em impossible} to achieve using black-box simulations. In particular, only languages in BPP have resettably-sound arguments that are zero-knowledge with respect to black-box simulation.
2001
EPRINT
On the (Im)possibility of Obfuscating Programs
Informally, an {\em obfuscator} $O$ is an (efficient, probabilistic) ``compiler'' that takes as input a program (or circuit) $P$ and produces a new program $O(P)$ that has the same functionality as $P$ yet is ``unintelligible'' in some sense. Obfuscators, if they exist, would have a wide variety of cryptographic and complexity-theoretic applications, ranging from software protection to homomorphic encryption to complexity-theoretic analogues of Rice's theorem. Most of these applications are based on an interpretation of the ``unintelligibility'' condition in obfuscation as meaning that $O(P)$ is a ``virtual black box,'' in the sense that anything one can efficiently compute given $O(P)$, one could also efficiently compute given oracle access to $P$. In this work, we initiate a theoretical investigation of obfuscation. Our main result is that, even under very weak formalizations of the above intuition, obfuscation is impossible. We prove this by constructing a family of functions $F$ that are {\em \inherently unobfuscatable} in the following sense: there is a property $\pi : F \rightarrow \{0,1\}$ such that (a) given {\em any program} that computes a function $f\in F$, the value $\pi(f)$ can be efficiently computed, yet (b) given {\em oracle access} to a (randomly selected) function $f\in F$, no efficient algorithm can compute $\pi(f)$ much better than random guessing. We extend our impossibility result in a number of ways, including even obfuscators that (a) are not necessarily computable in polynomial time, (b) only {\em approximately} preserve the functionality, and (c) only need to work for very restricted models of computation ($TC_0$). We also rule out several potential applications of obfuscators, by constructing ``unobfuscatable'' signature schemes, encryption schemes, and pseudorandom function families.
2001
EPRINT
Universal Arguments and their Applications
Boaz Barak Oded Goldreich
We put forward a new type of computationally-sound proof systems, called universal-arguments, which are related but different from both CS-proofs (as defined by Micali) and arguments (as defined by Brassard, Chaum and Crepeau). In particular, we adopt the instance-based prover-efficiency paradigm of CS-proofs, but follow the computational-soundness condition of argument systems (i.e., we consider only cheating strategies that are implementable by polynomial-size circuits). We show that universal-arguments can be constructed based on standard intractability assumptions that refer to polynomial-size circuits (rather than assumptions referring to subexponential-size circuits as used in the construction of CS-proofs). As an application of universal-arguments, we weaken the intractability assumptions used in the recent non-black-box zero-knowledge arguments of Barak. Specifically, we only utilize intractability assumptions that refer to polynomial-size circuits (rather than assumptions referring to circuits of some ``nice'' super-polynomial size).

Program Committees

TCC 2013
TCC 2011
Crypto 2008
TCC 2008
Crypto 2006
Crypto 2005
TCC 2005