Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2015/242

Compactly Hiding Linear Spans: Tightly Secure Constant-Size Simulation-Sound QA-NIZK Proofs and Applications

Benoit Libert and Thomas Peters and Marc Joye and Moti Yung

Abstract: Quasi-adaptive non-interactive zero-knowledge (QA-NIZK) proofs is a recent paradigm, suggested by Jutla and Roy (Asiacrypt'13), which is motivated by the Groth-Sahai seminal techniques for efficient non-interactive zero-knowledge (NIZK) proofs. In this paradigm, the common reference string may depend on specific language parameters, a fact that allows much shorter proofs in important cases. It even makes certain standard model applications competitive with the Fiat-Shamir heuristic in the Random Oracle idealization. Such QA-NIZK proofs were recently optimized to constant size by Jutla and Roy (Crypto'14) and Libert et al. (Eurocrypt'14) for the important case of proving that a vector of group elements belongs to a linear subspace.

While the QA-NIZK arguments of Libert et al. provide unbounded simulation-soundness and constant proof length, their simulation-soundness is only loosely related to the underlying assumption (with a gap proportional to the number of adversarial queries) and it is unknown how to alleviate this limitation without sacrificing efficiency.

In this paper, we deal with the question of whether we can simultaneously optimize the proof size and the tightness of security reductions, allowing for important applications with tight security (which are typically quite lengthy) to be of shorter size. We resolve this question by designing a novel simulation-sound QA-NIZK argument showing that a vector $\vec{v} \in \G^n$ belongs to a subspace of rank $t <n$ using a constant number of group elements. Unlike previous short QA-NIZK proofs of such statements, the unbounded simulation-soundness of our system is nearly tightly related (i.e., the reduction only loses a factor proportional to the security parameter) to the standard Decision Linear assumption.

To show simulation-soundness in the constrained context of tight reductions, we explicitly point at a technique -- which may be of independent interest -- of hiding the linear span of a vector defined by a signature (which is part of an OR proof).

As an application, we design a public-key cryptosystem with almost tight CCA2-security in the multi-challenge, multi-user setting with improved length (asymptotically optimal for long messages). We also adapt our scheme to provide CCA security in the key-dependent message scenario (KDM-CCA2) with ciphertext length reduced by 75% when compared to the best known tightly secure KDM-CCA2 system so far.

Category / Keywords: public-key cryptography / Security tightness, constant-size QA-NIZK proofs, simulation-soundness, chosen-ciphertext security, threshold cryptosystems, KDM-CCA2 security, UC commitments, bilinear groups, Decision Linear assumption

Original Publication (with major differences): IACR-ASIACRYPT-2015

Date: received 14 Mar 2015, last revised 11 Jan 2016

Contact author: benoit libert at ens-lyon fr

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Version: 20160111:124143 (All versions of this report)

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