SoK: Secure Aggregation Based on Cryptographic Schemes for Federated Learning

Authors: Mohamad Mansouri (Thales SIX GTS / EURECOM), Melek Önen (EURECOM), Wafa Ben Jaballah (Thales SIX GTS), Mauro Conti (University of Padua)

Volume: 2023
Issue: 1
Pages: 140–157

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Abstract: Secure aggregation consists of computing the sum of data collected from multiple sources without disclosing these individual inputs. Secure aggregation has been found useful for various applications ranging from electronic voting to smart grid measurements. Recently, federated learning emerged as a new collaborative machine learning technology to train machine learning models. In this work, we study the suitability of secure aggregation based on cryptographic schemes to federated learning. We first provide a formal definition of the problem and suggest a systematic categorization of existing solutions. We further investigate the specific challenges raised by federated learning and analyze the recent dedicated secure aggregation solutions based on cryptographic schemes. We finally share some takeaway messages that would help a secure design of federated learning and identify open research directions in this topic. Based on the takeaway messages, we propose an improved definition of secure aggregation that better fits federated learning.

Keywords: Secure Aggregation, Homomorphic Encryption, Multi-Party Computation, Federated Learning

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