Security of Identity-Based Encryption Algorithms

Security of Identity-Based Encryption Algorithms

Kannan Balasubramanian (Mepco Schlenk Engineering College, India) and M. Rajakani (Mepco Schlenk Engineering College, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7492-7.ch025

Abstract

The concept of identity-based cryptography introduced the idea of using arbitrary strings such as e-mail addresses and IP addresses to form public keys with the corresponding private keys being created by the trusted authority (TA) who is in possession of a systemwide master secret. Then a party, Alice, who wants to send encrypted communication to Bob need only Bob's identifier and the systemwide public parameters. Thus, the receiver is able to choose and manipulate the public key of the intended recipient which has a number of advantages. While IBC removes the problem of trust in the public key, it introduces trust in the TA. As the TA uses the systemwide master secret to compute private keys for users in the system, it can effectively recompute a private key for any arbitrary string without having to archive private keys. This greatly simplifies key management as the TA simply needs to protect its master secret.
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Background

The public key encryption is a cryptographic system that uses two keys -- a public key known to everyone and a private or secret key known only to the recipient of the message. When user Alice wants to send a secure message to user Bob, she uses Bob's public key to encrypt the message, Bob then uses his private key to decrypt it. An important element to the public key system is that the public and private keys are related in such a way that only the public key can be used to encrypt messages and only the corresponding private key can be used to decrypt them. Moreover, it is virtually impossible to deduce the private key if you know the public key. Users will exchange public keys; this transaction does not need to be done in a secure manner because the release of public keys does not threaten the security of any private information. After this swap, someone who wishes to send private information to another user will encrypt the data with the intended recipient’s public key and then pass along the encrypted message. The recipient, who will keep his or her private key secure under any circumstance, can use the private key to decrypt the encoded message.

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