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Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security

Privacy Preserving Delegated Access Control in Public Clouds


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Mohamed Nabeel, Elisa Bertino

Tech report number

CERIAS TR 2012-11

Entry type



Current approaches to enforce fine-grained access control on confidential data hosted in the cloud are based on fine-grained encryption of the data. Under such approaches, data owners are in charge of encrypting the data before uploading them on the cloud and re-encrypting the data whenever user credentials or authorization policies change. Data owners thus incur high communication and computation costs. A better approach should delegate the enforcement of fine-grained access control to the cloud, so to minimize the overhead at the data owners, while assuring data confidentiality from the cloud. We propose an approach, based on two layers of encryption, that addresses such requirement. Under our approach, the data owner performs a coarse-grained encryption, whereas the cloud performs a fine-grained encryption on top of the owner encrypted data. A challenging issue is how to decompose access control policies (ACPs) such that the two layer encryption can be performed.We show that this problem is NP-complete and propose novel optimization algorithms. We utilize an efficient group key management scheme that supports expressive ACPs. Our system assures the confidentiality of the data and preserves the privacy of users from the cloud while delegating most of the access control enforcement to the cloud.




2012 – 7 – 1

Key alpha

confidentiality, access control, cloud computing

Publication Date


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