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The suffix-free-prefix-free hash function construction and its indifferentiability security analysis
(2012)

In this paper, we observe that in the seminal work on indifferentiability analysis of iterated hash functions by Coron et al. and in subsequent works, the initial value (IV) of hash functions is fixed. In addition, these indifferentiability results do not depend on the Merkle–Damgård (MD) strengthening in the padding functionality of the hash functions. We propose a generic n-bit-iterated hash function framework based on an n-bit compression function called suffix-free-prefix-free (SFPF) that works for arbitrary IVs and does not possess MD strengthening. We formally prove that SFPF is indifferentiable from a random oracle (RO) when the compression function is viewed as a fixed input-length random oracle (FIL-RO). We show that some hash function constructions proposed in the literature fit in the SFPF framework while others that do not fit in this framework are not indifferentiable from a RO. We also show that the SFPF hash function framework with the provision of MD strengthening generalizes any n-bit-iterated hash function based on an n-bit compression function and with an n-bit chaining value that is proven indifferentiable from a RO.

The economic dispatch (ED) problem is a large-scale optimization problem in electricity power grids. Its goal is to find a power output combination of all generator nodes that meet the demand of the customers at minimum operating cost. In recent years, distributed protocols have been proposed to replace the traditional centralized ED calculation for modern smart grid infrastructures with the most realistic being the one proposed by Binetti et al. (2014). However, we show that this protocol leaks private information of the generator nodes. We then propose a privacy-preserving distributed protocol that solves the ED problem. We analyze the security of our protocol and give experimental results from a prototype implementation to show the feasibility of the solution.

The aim of the smart grid is to achieve more efficient,
distributed and secure supply of energy over the traditional power grid by using a bidirectional information flow between the grid agents (e.g. generator node, customer). One of the key optimization problems in smart grid is to produce power among generator nodes with a minimum cost while meeting the customer demand, known as Economic Dispatch Problem
(EDP). In recent years, many distributed approaches to solve EDP have been proposed. However, protecting the privacy-sensitive data of individual generator nodes has been largely overlooked in the existing solutions. In this work, we show an attack against an existing auction-based EDP protocol considering a non-colluding semi-honest adversary. We briefly introduce our approach to a practical privacy-preserving EDP solution as our work in progress.

Ripple: Overview and Outlook
(2015)