Privacy-Enhanced Searches Using Encrypted Bloom Filters

Bellovin, Steven Michael; Cheswick, William R.

It is often necessary for two or more or more parties that do not fully trust each other to share data selectively. For example, one intelligence agency might be willing to turn over certain documents to another such agency, but only if the second agency requests the specific documents. The problem, of course, is finding out that such documents exist when access to the database is restricted. We propose a search scheme based on Bloom filters and group ciphers such as Pohlig-Hellman encryption. A semi-trusted third party can transform one party's search queries to a form suitable for querying the other party's database, in such a way that neither the third party nor the database owner can see the original query. Furthermore, the encryption keys used to construct the Bloom filters are not shared with this third party. Multiple providers and queries are supported; provision can be made for third-party "warrant servers", as well as "censorship sets" that limit the data to be shared.



More About This Work

Academic Units
Computer Science
Department of Computer Science, Columbia University
Columbia University Computer Science Technical Reports, CUCS-034-07
Published Here
April 27, 2011