Dominic Hughes - Selected Papers

Information Hiding, Anonymity and Privacy: a Modular Approach [pdf - ps - ps.gz]
With Vitaly Shmatikov.
Journal of Computer Security, 2004.

We propose a new specification framework for information hiding properties such as anonymity and privacy. The framework is based on the concept of a function view, which is a concise representation of the attacker's partial knowledge about a function. We describe system behavior as a set of functions, and formalize different information hiding properties in terms of views of these functions. We present an extensive case study, in which we use the function view framework to systematically classify and rigorously define a rich domain of identity-related properties, and to demonstrate that privacy and anonymity are independent.

The key feature of our approach is its modularity. It yields precise, formal specifications of information hiding properties for any protocol formalism and any choice of the attacker model as long as the latter induce an observational equivalence relation on protocol instances. In particular, specifications based on function views are suitable for any cryptographic process calculus that defines some form of indistinguishability between processes. Our definitions of information hiding properties take into account any feature of the security model, including probabilities, random number generation, timing, etc., to the extent that it is accounted for by the formalism in which the system is specified.

Keywords: security, information hiding, logic, knowledge, Kripke structure, verification, anonymity, privacy