Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2018/240

Towards Non-Interactive Zero-Knowledge for NP from LWE

Ron D. Rothblum and Adam Sealfon and Katerina Sotiraki

Abstract: Non-interactive zero-knowledge (NIZK) is a fundamental primitive that is widely used in the construction of cryptographic schemes and protocols. Despite this, general purpose constructions of NIZK proof systems are only known under a rather limited set of assumptions that are either number-theoretic (and can be broken by a quantum computer) or are not sufficiently well understood, such as obfuscation. Thus, a basic question that has drawn much attention is whether it is possible to construct general-purpose NIZK proof systems based on the learning with errors (LWE) assumption.

Our main result is a reduction from constructing NIZK proof systems for all of NP based on LWE, to constructing a NIZK proof system for a particular computational problem on lattices, namely a decisional variant of the Bounded Distance Decoding (BDD) problem. That is, we show that assuming LWE, every language L in NP has a NIZK proof system if (and only if) the decisional BDD problem has a NIZK proof system. This (almost) confirms a conjecture of Peikert and Vaikuntanathan (CRYPTO, 2008).

To construct our NIZK proof system, we introduce a new notion that we call prover-assisted oblivious ciphertext sampling (POCS), which we believe to be of independent interest. This notion extends the idea of oblivious ciphertext sampling, which allows one to sample ciphertexts without knowing the underlying plaintext. Specifically, we augment the oblivious ciphertext sampler with access to an (untrusted) prover to help it accomplish this task. We show that the existence of encryption schemes with a POCS procedure, as well as some additional natural requirements, suffices for obtaining NIZK proofs for NP. We further show that such encryption schemes can be instantiated based on LWE, assuming the existence of a NIZK proof system for the decisional BDD problem.

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Date: received 2 Mar 2018

Contact author: asealfon at mit edu

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Version: 20180305:160348 (All versions of this report)

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