On Privacy Notions in Anonymous Communication

Authors: Christiane Kuhn (TU Dresden), Martin Beck (TU Dresden), Stefan Schiffner (Université du Luxembourg), Eduard Jorswieck (TU Dresden), Thorsten Strufe (TU Dresden)

Volume: 2019
Issue: 2
Pages: 105–125
DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/popets-2019-0022

Download PDF

Abstract: Many anonymous communication networks (ACNs) with different privacy goals have been developed. Still, there are no accepted formal definitions of privacy goals, and ACNs often define their goals ad hoc. However, the formal definition of privacy goals benefits the understanding and comparison of different flavors of privacy and, as a result, the improvement of ACNs. In this paper, we work towards defining and comparing privacy goals by formalizing them as privacy notions and identifying their building blocks. For any pair of notions we prove whether one is strictly stronger, and, if so, which. Hence, we are able to present a complete hierarchy. Using this rigorous comparison between notions, we revise inconsistencies between the existing works and improve the understanding of privacy goals.

Keywords: Anonymity, Privacy notion, Anonymous Communication, Network Security

Copyright in PoPETs articles are held by their authors. This article is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 license.