Secure bit commitment from relativistic constraints

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, 2013, 59 (7), pp. 4687 - 4699
Issue Date:
2013-01-01
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We investigate two-party cryptographic protocols that are secure under assumptions motivated by physics, namely special relativity and quantum mechanics. In particular, we discuss the security of bit commitment in the so-called split models, i.e., models in which at least one of the parties is not allowed to communicate during certain phases of the protocol. We find the minimal splits that are necessary to evade the Mayers-Lo-Chau no-go argument and present protocols that achieve security in these split models. Furthermore, we introduce the notion of local versus global command, a subtle issue that arises when the split committer is required to delegate noncommunicating agents to open the commitment. We argue that classical protocols are insecure under global command in the split model we consider. On the other hand, we provide a rigorous security proof in the global command model for Kent's quantum protocol [1]. The proof employs two fundamental principles of modern physics, the no-signaling property of relativity and the uncertainty principle of quantum mechanics. © 2013 IEEE.
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