Paper 2023/1024

Timed Secret Sharing

Alireza Kavousi, University College London
Aydin Abadi, University College London
Philipp Jovanovic, University College London

This paper introduces the notion of timed secret sharing (TSS), which establishes lower and upper time bounds for secret reconstruction in a threshold secret sharing scheme. Such time bounds are particularly useful in scenarios where an early or late reconstruction of a secret matters. We propose several new constructions that offer different security properties and show how they can be instantiated efficiently using novel techniques. We highlight how our ideas can be used to break a public goods game, which is an issue inherent to threshold secret sharing-based systems, without relying on incentive systems. We achieve this through an upper time bound that can be implemented either via short-lived proofs, or the gradual release of additional shares, establishing a trade-off between time and fault tolerance. The latter independently provides robustness in the event of dropout by some portion of shareholders.

Available format(s)
Cryptographic protocols
Publication info
Secret sharingtime-based cryptographyverifiable delay functiontime-lock puzzle
Contact author(s)
a kavousi @ cs ucl ac uk
aydin abadi @ ucl ac uk
p jovanovic @ ucl ac uk
2024-02-13: revised
2023-07-02: received
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      author = {Alireza Kavousi and Aydin Abadi and Philipp Jovanovic},
      title = {Timed Secret Sharing},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2023/1024},
      year = {2023},
      note = {\url{}},
      url = {}
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