[Resource Topic] 2023/1316: Communication Lower Bounds for Cryptographic Broadcast Protocols

Welcome to the resource topic for 2023/1316

Communication Lower Bounds for Cryptographic Broadcast Protocols

Authors: Erica Blum, Elette Boyle, Ran Cohen, Chen-Da Liu-Zhang


Broadcast protocols enable a set of n parties to agree on the input of a designated sender, even facing attacks by malicious parties. In the honest-majority setting, a fruitful line of work harnessed randomization and cryptography to achieve low-communication broadcast protocols with sub-quadratic total communication and with “balanced” sub-linear communication cost per party.

However, comparatively little is known in the dishonest-majority setting. Here, the most communication-efficient constructions are based on the protocol of Dolev and Strong (SICOMP '83), and sub-quadratic broadcast has not been achieved even using randomization and cryptography. On the other hand, the only nontrivial \omega(n) communication lower bounds are restricted to deterministic protocols, or against strong adaptive adversaries that can perform “after the fact” removal of messages.

We provide new communication lower bounds in this space, which hold against arbitrary cryptography and setup assumptions, as well as a simple protocol showing near tightness of our first bound.

  1. We demonstrate a tradeoff between resiliency and communication for randomized protocols secure against n-o(n) static corruptions. For example, \Omega(n\cdot {\sf polylog}(n)) messages are needed when the number of honest parties is n/{\sf polylog}(n); \Omega(n\sqrt{n}) messages are needed for O(\sqrt{n}) honest parties; and \Omega(n^2) messages are needed for O(1) honest parties.

Complementarily, we demonstrate broadcast with O(n\cdot{\sf polylog}(n)) total communication facing any constant fraction of static corruptions.

  1. Our second bound considers n/2 + k corruptions and a weakly adaptive adversary that cannot remove messages “after the fact.” We show that any broadcast protocol within this setting can be attacked to force an arbitrary party to send messages to k other parties. Our bound rules out, for example, broadcast facing 51\% corruptions, in which all non-sender parties have sublinear communication locality.

ePrint: https://eprint.iacr.org/2023/1316

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