Zero-Knowledge Proofs and String Commitments Withstanding Quantum
Ivan B. Damgård
The concept of zero-knowledge (ZK) has become of fundamental importance in cryptography. However, in a setting where entities are modeled by quantum computers, classical arguments for proving ZK fail to hold since, in the quantum setting, the concept of rewinding is not generally applicable. Moreover, known classical techniques that avoid rewinding have various shortcomings in the quantum setting.
We propose new techniques for building quantum zero-knowledge (QZK) protocols, which remain secure even under (active) quantum attacks. We obtain computational QZK proofs and perfect QZK arguments for any NP language in the common reference string model. This is based on a general method converting an important class of classical honest-verifier ZK (HVZK) proofs into QZK proofs. This leads to quite practical protocols if the underlying HVZK proof is efficient. These are the first proof protocols enjoying these properties, in particular the first to achieve perfect QZK.
As part of our construction, we propose a general framework for building unconditionally hiding (trapdoor) string commitment schemes, secure against quantum attacks, as well as concrete instantiations based on specific (believed to be) hard problems. This is of independent interest, as these are the first unconditionally hiding string commitment schemes withstanding quantum attacks.
Finally, we give a partial answer to the question whether QZK is possible in the plain model. We propose a new notion of QZK, non-oblivious verifier QZK, which is strictly stronger than honest-verifier QZK but weaker than full QZK, and we show that this notion can be achieved by means of efficient (quantum) protocols