Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2013/055

Secrecy without one-way functions

Dima Grigoriev and Vladimir Shpilrain

Abstract: We show that some problems in information security can be solved without using one-way functions. The latter are usually regarded as a central concept of cryptography, but the very existence of one-way functions depends on difficult conjectures in complexity theory, most notably on the notorious "$P \ne NP$" conjecture. In this paper, we suggest protocols for secure computation of the sum, product, and some other functions, without using any one-way functions. A new input that we offer here is that, in contrast with other proposals, we conceal "intermediate results" of a computation. For example, when we compute the sum of $k$ numbers, only the final result is known to the parties; partial sums are not known to anybody. Other applications of our method include voting/rating over insecure channels and a rather elegant and efficient solution of Yao's "millionaires' problem". Then, while it is fairly obvious that a secure (bit) commitment between two parties is impossible without a one-way function, we show that it is possible if the number of parties is at least 3. We also show how our (bit) commitment scheme for 3 parties can be used to arrange an unconditionally secure (bit) commitment between just two parties if they use a "dummy" (e.g., a computer) as the third party. We explain how our concept of a "dummy" is different from a well-known concept of a "trusted third party". We also suggest a protocol, without using a one-way function, for "mental poker", i.e., a fair card dealing (and playing) over distance. We also propose a secret sharing scheme where an advantage over Shamir's and other known secret sharing schemes is that nobody, including the dealer, ends up knowing the shares owned by any particular player. It should be mentioned that computational cost of our protocols is negligible to the point that all of them can be executed without a computer.

Category / Keywords: cryptographic protocols / multiparty computation, bit commitment, mental poker, secret sharing

Date: received 22 Jan 2013, last revised 12 Feb 2013

Contact author: shpilrain at yahoo com

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Version: 20130212:171600 (All versions of this report)

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