[Resource Topic] 2022/414: PQ-HPKE: Post-Quantum Hybrid Public Key Encryption

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PQ-HPKE: Post-Quantum Hybrid Public Key Encryption

Authors: Mila Anastasova, Panos Kampanakis, Jake Massimo


Public key cryptography is used to asymmetrically establish keys, authenticate or encrypt data between communicating parties at a relatively high performance cost. To reduce computational overhead, modern network protocols combine asymmetric primitives for key establishment and authentication with symmetric ones. Similarly, Hybrid Public Key Encryption, a relatively new scheme, uses public key cryptography for key derivation and symmetric key cryptography for data encryption. In this paper, we present the first quantum-resistant implementation of HPKE to address concerns that quantum computers bring to asymmetric algorithms. We propose PQ-only and PQ-hybrid HPKE variants and analyze their performance for two post-quantum key encapsulation mechanisms and various plaintext sizes. We compare these variants with RSA and classical HPKE and show that the additional post-quantum overhead is amortized over the plaintext size. Our PQ-hybrid variant with a lattice-based KEM shows an overhead of 52% for 1KB of encrypted data which is reduced to 17% for 1MB of plaintext. We report 1.83, 1.78, and 2.15 x10^6 clock cycles needed for encrypting 1MB of message based on classical, PQ-only, and PQ-hybrid HPKE respectively, where we note that the cost of introducing quantum-resistance to HPKE is relatively low.

ePrint: https://eprint.iacr.org/2022/414

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