PANTHEON (Programming Architecture iNtegrated Toolchain for compiling Homomorphic Encryption and ONline Secure Computation) is a multi-year project awarded by IARPA to accomplish the goal of developing a software language and platform for prototyping, evaluating, and deploying secure computation. The effort is headed by Stealth Software Technologies, Inc. with subcontractors from: Georgia Institute of Technology, University of Connecticut, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, University of Vermont, and Galois, Inc.
Secure computation tools can enable new paradigms, such as publicly auditing that queries for the PII of US citizens are in compliance with a court order while hiding the queries made, or outsourcing network-threat analysis while keeping details of the analytics secret. These protocols have not yet been widely deployed, in part because developing a secure-computation protocol currently requires significant manual effort: generating a task specification and threat model, designing and analyzing a protocol, and implementing the protocol. Designing an efficient protocol may require a combination of advanced cryptographic tools, and a full solution will often require new subprotocols to “glue” those tools together. This process is limited: (1) it takes too long; (2) the solution may not meet application needs; (3) it requires domain experts to design, prove secure, and implement a solution; and (4) it is difficult to convey the security guarantees to non-experts.
PANTHEON aims to close the gap by providing an easy-to-use platform that transforms the description of a computation involving sensitive data into a cryptographically secure, “end-to-end” solution that satisfies specified security goals. PANTHEON will greatly expand the number of programmers capable of developing secure-computation protocols, and the number of users who will benefit from their deployment. Like app markets in the mobile setting, the democratization of secure computation will result in transformational applications and will reduce deployment time from years to weeks. Our vision is extremely ambitious: PANTHEON will automatically combine multiple cryptographic tools to satisfy security and efficiency constraints in various models. The core of our system is a pipeline that transforms a source specification (with minimal annotations) into an executable protocol through a series of intermediate languages and cryptographic modules. Essential to our approach is the use of novel type systems and type conversions that allow seamless translation between different cryptographic computations.
This research is based upon work done in collaboration with Galois Inc., Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Connecticut, the University of Michigan, and the University of Vermont; and was supported in part by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), via 2019-1902070008.