Boreale, Michele and Pampaloni, Francesca and Paolini, Michela
Quantitative information flow, with a view.
In:
Computer Security – ESORICS 2011.
Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 6879
(6879).
Springer, pp. 588606.
ISBN 9783642238215
(2011)
Abstract
We put forward a general model intended for assessment of system security against passive eavesdroppers, both quantitatively ( how much information is leaked) and qualitatively ( what properties are leaked). To this purpose, we extend information hiding systems ( ihs ), a model where the secretobservable relation is represented as a noisy channel, with views : basically, partitions of the statespace. Given a view W and n independent observations of the system, one is interested in the probability that a Bayesian adversary wrongly predicts the class of W the underlying secret belongs to. We offer results that allow one to easily characterise the behaviour of this error probability as a function of the number of observations, in terms of the channel matrices defining the ihs and the view W . In particular, we provide expressions for the limit value as n → ∞, show by tight bounds that convergence is exponential, and also characterise the rate of convergence to predefined error thresholds. We then show a few instances of statistical attacks that can be assessed by a direct application of our model: attacks against modular exponentiation that exploit timing leaks, against anonymity in mixnets and against privacy in sparse datasets.
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