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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/26251

Title: Cryptography: Leakage Resilience, Black Box Separations, and Credential-free Key Exchange
Authors: Vahlis, Evgene
Advisor: Rackoff, Charles
Department: Computer Science
Keywords: Cryptography
Issue Date: 17-Feb-2011
Abstract: We study several basic problems in cryptography: Leakage resilient cryptography: cryptographic schemes are often broken through side-channel attacks on the devices that run them. Such attacks typically involve an adversary that is within short distance from the device, and is able to measure various physical characteristics of the device such as power consumption, timing, heat, and sound emanation. We show how to immunize any cryptographic functionality against arbitrary side-channel attacks using the recently achieved fully homomorphic encryption, and a single piece of secure hardware that samples from a public distribution. Our secure hardware never touches any secret information (such as a private key) and is testable in the sense that its inputs are not influenced by user or adversarial inputs. Credential-free key exchange and sessions: One of the most basic tasks in cryptography is to allow two parties that are connected by a completely insecure channel to communicate securely. Typically, the first step towards achieving this is an exchange of a session key. Such an exchange normally requires an infrastructure, where, for example, public keys of users are stored, and can be securely retrieved. However, often such an infrastructure does not exist, or is too costly to maintain. In such a setting an adversary can always be the Man-In-The-Middle and intercept all communications. However, we argue that a meaningful level of security can still be achieved. We present a definition of secure key exchange in a setting without any infrastructure, and describe a protocol that achieves that type of security. The idea is that an adversary should either know nothing about the session key produced by the protocol, or be forced to participate in two independent instances of the protocol Black-box separations: A complementary aspect of cryptographic research is the study of the limits of cryptographic assumptions. Basing constructions on weaker assumptions gives us more confidence in their security. We therefore wish to find, for each standard cryptographic assumption, what tasks cannot be solved based solely on that assumption. In this thesis we study the limits of a very basic public key primitive: trapdoor permutations (TDPs). We show that TDPs cannot be used to construct Identity Based Encryption or a stronger type of TDPs called correlation secure TDPs. Correlation secure TDPs have been used to build chosen-ciphertext secure public key encryption scheme -- a primitive with a wide range of theoretical and practical applications.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/26251
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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