Visible to the public Biblio

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2017-04-24
Barman, Ludovic, Zamani, Mahdi, Dacosta, Italo, Feigenbaum, Joan, Ford, Bryan, Hubaux, Jean-Pierre, Wolinsky, David.  2016.  PriFi: A Low-Latency and Tracking-Resistant Protocol for Local-Area Anonymous Communication. Proceedings of the 2016 ACM on Workshop on Privacy in the Electronic Society. :181–184.

Popular anonymity mechanisms such as Tor provide low communication latency but are vulnerable to traffic analysis attacks that can de-anonymize users. Moreover, known traffic-analysis-resistant techniques such as Dissent are impractical for use in latency-sensitive settings such as wireless networks. In this paper, we propose PriFi, a low-latency protocol for anonymous communication in local area networks that is provably secure against traffic analysis attacks. This allows members of an organization to access the Internet anonymously while they are on-site, via privacy-preserving WiFi networking, or off-site, via privacy-preserving virtual private networking (VPN). PriFi reduces communication latency using a client/relay/server architecture in which a set of servers computes cryptographic material in parallel with the clients to minimize unnecessary communication latency. We also propose a technique for protecting against equivocation attacks, with which a malicious relay might de-anonymize clients. This is achieved without adding extra latency by encrypting client messages based on the history of all messages they have received so far. As a result, any equivocation attempt makes the communication unintelligible, preserving clients' anonymity while holding the servers accountable.

2017-06-27
Maheswaran, John, Jackowitz, Daniel, Zhai, Ennan, Wolinsky, David Isaac, Ford, Bryan.  2016.  Building Privacy-Preserving Cryptographic Credentials from Federated Online Identities. Proceedings of the Sixth ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy. :3–13.

Federated identity providers, e.g., Facebook and PayPal, offer a convenient means for authenticating users to third-party applications. Unfortunately such cross-site authentications carry privacy and tracking risks. For example, federated identity providers can learn what applications users are accessing; meanwhile, the applications can know the users' identities in reality. This paper presents Crypto-Book, an anonymizing layer enabling federated identity authentications while preventing these risks. Crypto-Book uses a set of independently managed servers that employ a (t,n)-threshold cryptosystem to collectively assign credentials to each federated identity (in the form of either a public/private keypair or blinded signed messages). With the credentials in hand, clients can then leverage anonymous authentication techniques such as linkable ring signatures or partially blind signatures to log into third-party applications in an anonymous yet accountable way. We have implemented a prototype of Crypto-Book and demonstrated its use with three applications: a Wiki system, an anonymous group communication system, and a whistleblower submission system. Crypto-Book is practical and has low overhead: in a deployment within our research group, Crypto-Book group authentication took 1.607s end-to-end, an overhead of 1.2s compared to traditional non-privacy-preserving federated authentication.

2018-11-28
Kwon, Albert, Corrigan-Gibbs, Henry, Devadas, Srinivas, Ford, Bryan.  2017.  Atom: Horizontally Scaling Strong Anonymity. Proceedings of the 26th Symposium on Operating Systems Principles. :406–422.

Atom is an anonymous messaging system that protects against traffic-analysis attacks. Unlike many prior systems, each Atom server touches only a small fraction of the total messages routed through the network. As a result, the system's capacity scales near-linearly with the number of servers. At the same time, each Atom user benefits from "best possible" anonymity: a user is anonymous among all honest users of the system, even against an active adversary who monitors the entire network, a portion of the system's servers, and any number of malicious users. The architectural ideas behind Atom have been known in theory, but putting them into practice requires new techniques for (1) avoiding heavy general-purpose multi-party computation protocols, (2) defeating active attacks by malicious servers at minimal performance cost, and (3) handling server failure and churn. Atom is most suitable for sending a large number of short messages, as in a microblogging application or a high-security communication bootstrapping ("dialing") for private messaging systems. We show that, on a heterogeneous network of 1,024 servers, Atom can transit a million Tweet-length messages in 28 minutes. This is over 23x faster than prior systems with similar privacy guarantees.