International Association for Cryptologic Research

International Association
for Cryptologic Research

IACR News item: 12 February 2024

Zeyu Liu, Eran Tromer, Yunhao Wang
ePrint Report ePrint Report
Anonymous message delivery, as in privacy-preserving blockchain and private messaging applications, needs to protect recipient metadata: eavesdroppers should not be able to link messages to their recipients. This raises the question: how can untrusted servers assist in delivering the pertinent messages to each recipient, without learning which messages are addressed to whom?

Recent work constructed Oblivious Message Retrieval (OMR) protocols that outsource the message detection and retrieval in a privacy-preserving way, using homomorphic encryption. This exhibits significant costs in computation per message scanned (${\sim}109$ms), as well as in the size of the associated messages (${\sim}1$kB overhead) and public keys (${\sim}132$kB).

This work constructs more efficient OMR schemes, by replacing the LWE-based clue encryption of prior works with a Ring-LWE variant, and utilizing the resulting flexibility to improve several components of the scheme. We thus devise, analyze, and benchmark two protocols:

The first protocol focuses on improving the detector runtime, using a new retrieval circuit that can be homomorphically evaluated more efficiently. Concretely, this construction takes only ${\sim}7.3$ms per message scanned, about $15$x faster than the prior work.

The second protocol focuses on reducing the communication costs, by designing a different homomorphic decryption circuit. While the circuit is less homomorphic-encryption-friendly (than our first construction), it allows the parameter of the Ring-LWE encryption to be set such that both the public key and the message size are greatly reduced. Concretely, the public key size is about $235$x smaller than the prior work, and the message size is roughly $1.6$x smaller. The runtime of this second construction is ${\sim}40.0$ms per message, still more than $2.5$x faster than prior works.

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