Rate-Limited Secure Function Evaluation: Definitions and Constructions

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Abstract

We introduce the notion of rate-limited secure function evaluation (RL-SFE). Loosely speaking, in an RL-SFE protocol participants can monitor and limit the number of distinct inputs (i.e., rate) used by their counterparts in multiple executions of an SFE, in a private and verifiable manner. The need for RL-SFE naturally arises in a variety of scenarios: e.g., it enables service providers to “meter” their customers’ usage without compromising their privacy, or can be used to prevent oracle attacks against SFE constructions.

We consider three variants of RL-SFE providing different levels of security. As a stepping stone, we also formalize the notion of commit-first SFE (cf-SFE) wherein parties are committed to their inputs before each SFE execution. We provide compilers for transforming any cf-SFE protocol into each of the three RL-SFE variants. Our compilers are accompanied with simulation-based proofs of security in the standard model and show a clear tradeoff between the level of security offered and the overhead required. Moreover, motivated by the fact that in many client-server applications clients do not keep state, we also describe a general approach for transforming the resulting RL-SFE protocols into stateless ones.

As a case study, we take a closer look at the oblivious polynomial evaluation (OPE) protocol of Hazay and Lindell, show that it is commitfirst and instantiate efficient rate-limited variants of it.