|Covert two-party computation is a stronger notion of security than standard secure two-party computation. Like standard secure two-party computation, covert two-party computation allows Alice and Bob, with secret inputs x_A and x_B respectively, to compute a function f(x_A,x_B) without leaking any additional information about their inputs. In addition, covert two-party computation guarantees that even the existence of a computation is hidden from all protocol participants unless the value of the function mandates otherwise. This allows the construction of protocols that return f(x_A,x_B) only when it equals a certain value of interest (such as "Yes, we are romantically interested in each other") but for which neither party can determine whether the other even ran the protocol whenever f(x_A,x_B) is not a value of interest.|
This project will explore extending covert two-party computation to more than two parties. The REU student will investigate covert two-party computation and learn the necessary cryptographic tools. The undergraduate will learn the techniques of modern theoretical cryptography: proofs by simulation, definitions of semantic security, et cetera. The student will also learn about the cutting edge research in multiple areas of theoretical cryptography, such as multi-party computation and theoretical foundations of steganography. As a prerequisite, the undergraduate must have knowledge of computer science theory, especially complexity theory or cryptography.