Researchers from UCLA have published a new technique for program obfuscation. The security of their method can be mathematically reduced to plausible assumptions about what can feasibly be computed in a reasonable amount of time. This new technique potentially eliminates a class of worrisome attack vectors.
The new program obfuscation technique draws from the still-young field of lattice cryptography. The research community is studying lattice cryptography for its resistance to future quantum computing attacks that threaten current cryptography standards.
In 2009, Craig Gentry, a co-author of the recent paper on obfuscation, used lattice cryptography to implement related techniques for “fully homomorphic encryption,”touted as a theoretical solution to some cloud computing security problems.
The new program obfuscation techniques have still severe performance problems and remain unsuitable today for most applications. Similar performance issues plague applications of fully homomorphic encryption, although some progress has been made there.
The research team at whiteCryption is very interested in the new technique. It is tracking and studying these developments closely and looking at ways to improve its performance and contribute to the research.