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„On Computational Shortcuts for Information-Theoretic PIR“ Accepted at TCC 2020

Thepaper „On Computational Shortcuts for Information-Theoretic PIR“ by Matthew Man-Hou Hong, Yuval Ishai, Victor I. Kolobov and Russell W. F. Lai has been accepted at TCC 2020.

Below you will find the abstract of the paper.

Information-theoretic private information retrieval (PIR) schemes have attractive concrete efficiency features. However, in the standard PIR model, the computational complexity of the servers must scale linearly with the database size.

We study the possibility of bypassing this limitation in the case where the database is a truth table of a „simple“ function, such as a union of (multi-dimensional) intervals or convex shapes, a decision tree, or a DNF formula. This question is motivated by the goal of obtaining lightweight homomorphic secret sharing (HSS) schemes and secure multiparty computation (MPC) protocols for the corresponding families.

We obtain both positive and negative results. For „first-generation“ PIR schemes based on Reed-Muller codes, we obtain computational shortcuts for the above function families, with the exception of DNF formulas for which we show a (conditional) hardness result. For „third-generation“ PIR schemes based on matching vectors, we obtain stronger hardness results that apply to all of the above families.
Our positive results yield new information-theoretic HSS schemes and MPC protocols with attractive efficiency features for simple but useful function families. Our negative results establish new connections between information-theoretic cryptography and fine-grained complexity.