Computer Science Colloquia
Monday, April 1, 2013
Host: Dave Evans
3:30 PM, Rice Hall, Room 130 (auditorium), followed by a reception in Rice Hall Fourth Floor Atrium (west end)
On Tamper-Resilient Cryptography
Cryptographic protocols enable secure implementations of
electronic voting, electronic auctions, private data-base queries etc.
Ever since the work of Shannon in 1940s, however, cryptographic security
has been based on unproven complexity theoretic assumptions (e.g., the
hardness of factoring). Furthermore, proofs of security implicitly rely
on physical tamper-resilience assumptions. In this talk, we address the
questions of whether such assumptions are necessary.
1. Without tamper-resilient hardware, cryptographic protocols can be broken by tampering with a few bits of the randomness used by honest parties. Thus, to obtain secure protocols, some form of tamper-resilient hardware is *necessary.*
2. On the other hand, if we assume the existence of tamper resilient hardware, secure protocols (for all the above mentioned tasks and more) can be *unconditionally* achieved, without relying on any unproven assumptions.
Biosketch: Mohammad Mahmoody is currently a postdoc at Cornell University. He received his PhD from Princeton University where he was a recipient of the Wu Price for Excellence. Mohammad is interested in theoretical computer science, and his main research interests lie in cryptography and its interplay with computational complexity.
*Mr. Mahmoody is a faculty candidate for the Department of Computer Science.