Unformatted text preview: on the money order with the one stored in the database. If it is the same, the bank knows that the merchant copied the money order. If it is different, the bank knows that the person who bought the money order photocopied it. Since the second merchant who accepted the money order handed Alice a different selector string than did the first merchant, the bank finds a bit position where one merchant had Alice open the left half and the other merchant had Alice open the right half. The bank XORs the two halves together to reveal Alice’s identity. This is quite an amazing protocol, so let’s look at it from various angles. Can Alice cheat? Her digital money order is nothing more than a string of bits, so she can copy it. Spending it the first time won’t be a problem; she’ll just complete the protocol and everything will go smoothly. The merchant will give her a random n-bit selector string in step (7) and Alice will open either the left half or right half of each Ii in step (8). In step (10), the bank will record all of this data, as well as the money order’s uniqueness string. When she tries to use the same digital money order a second time, the merchant (either the same merchant or a different merchant) will give her a different random selector string in step (7). Alice must comply in step (8); not doing so will immediately alert the merchant that something is suspicious. Now, when the merchant brings the money order to the bank in step (10), the bank would immediately notice that a money order with the same uniqueness string was already deposited. The bank then compares the opened halves of the identity strings. The odds that the two random selector strings are the same is 1 in 2n; it isn’t likely to happen before the next ice age. Now, the bank finds a pair with one half opened the first time and the other half opened the second time. It XORs the two halves together, and out pops Alice’s name. The bank knows who tried to spend the money order twice. Note that this protocol doesn’t keep Alice from trying to cheat; it detects her cheating with almost certainty. Alice can’t prev...
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- Fall '10
- Cryptography, Bruce Schneier, Applied Cryptography, EarthWeb, Search Search Tips