How to Keep a Secret Alive

Extensible Partial Key, Key Safeguarding, and Threshold Systems
  • David Chaum
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 196)


Partial key, key safeguarding, and threshold techniques appear to be another example of similar good ideas springing up in several places at nearly the same time — each with a different name and associated terminology. The use of partial key techniques actually appeared in print first in a technical report [Chaum 79] before the key safeguarding techniques were presented at a conference [Blakley 79], and before the threshold schemes were submitted for publication [Shamir 79]. (In fact the author received comments on the technical report from Shamir, along with a draft of the threshold scheme.)


  1. (1).
    Blakley, G.R., “Safeguarding Cryptographic Keys,” Proceedings A.F.I.P.S. 1979 National Computer Conference, vol. 48, June 1979, pp. 313–317.Google Scholar
  2. (2).
    Chaw D., “Computer Systems Established, Maintained, and Trusted by Mutually Suspicious Groups,” Memorandum No. UCB/ERL M79/10, University of California, Berkeley, CA, February 22, 1979.Google Scholar
  3. (3).
    Chaum, D., “Computer Systems Established, Maintained, and Trusted by Mutually Suspicious Groups,” dissertation, Computer Science, University of California, Berkeley, CA, June 1982.Google Scholar
  4. (4).
    Feistel, H., “Cryptographic Coding for Data-Bank Privacy,” Research Report RC 2827, IBM T. J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY, March 1970.Google Scholar
  5. (5).
    Liu, C.L., Introduction to Combinatorial Mathematics, McGraw Hill, NY, 1968.MATHGoogle Scholar
  6. (6).
    Shamir, A., “How to Share a Secret,” Communications of the ACM, vol. 22, no. 11, November 1979, pp. 612–613.MATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Chaum
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Mathematics and Computer Science (CWI)AmsterdamThe Netherlands

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