Unformatted text preview: et none of the questions or answers gives Victor any information about Peggy’s information—only about her knowledge of it. Basic Zero-Knowledge Protocol
Jean-Jacques Quisquater and Louis Guillou explain zero-knowledge with a story about a cave . The cave, illustrated in Figure 5.1, has a secret. Someone who knows the magic words can open the secret door between C and D. To everyone else, both passages lead to dead ends. Peggy knows the secret of the cave. She wants to prove her knowledge to Victor, but she doesn’t want to reveal the magic words. Here’s how she convinces him: (1) Victor stands at point A. (2) Peggy walks all the way into the cave, either to point C or point D. (3) After Peggy has disappeared into the cave, Victor walks to point B. (4) Victor shouts to Peggy, asking her either to: (a) come out of the left passage or (b) come out of the right passage. (5) Peggy complies, using the magic words to open the secret door if she has to. (6) Peggy and Victor repeat steps (1) through (5) n times. Assume that Victor has a camcorder and records everything he sees. He records Peggy disappearing into the cave, he records when he shouts out where he wants Peggy to come out from, and he records Peggy coming out. He records all n trials. If he showed this recording to Carol, would she believe that Peggy knew the magic words to open the door? No. What if Peggy and Victor had agreed beforehand what Victor would call out, and Peggy would make sure that she went into that path. Then she could come out where Victor asked her every time, without knowing the magic words. Or maybe they couldn’t do that. Peggy would go into one of the passages and Victor would call out a random request. If Victor guessed right, great; if he didn’t, they would edit that trial out of the camcorder recording. Either way, Victor can get a recording showing exactly the same sequence of events as in a real proof where Peggy knew the magic words. Figure 5.1 The zero-knowledge cave. This shows two things. One, it is impossible for Victor to convince a third party of the proof’s validity. And two, it proves that...
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- Fall '10
- Cryptography, Bruce Schneier, Applied Cryptography, EarthWeb, Search Search Tips