Viaduct: an extensible, optimizing compiler for secure distributed programs
Coşku Acay, Rolph Recto, Joshua Gancher, Andrew C. Myers, and Elaine Shi

PLDI 2021


Modern distributed systems involve interactions between principals with limited trust, so cryptographic mechanisms are needed to protect confidentiality and integrity. At the same time, most developers lack the training to securely employ cryptography. We present Viaduct, a compiler that transforms high-level programs into secure, efficient distributed realizations. Viaduct's source language allows developers to declaratively specify security policies by annotating their programs with information flow labels. The compiler uses these labels to synthesize distributed programs that use cryptography efficiently while still defending the source-level security policy. The Viaduct approach is general, and can be easily extended with new security mechanisms.

Our implementation of the Viaduct compiler comes with an extensible runtime system that includes plug-in support for multiparty computation, commitments, and zero-knowledge proofs. We have evaluated the system on a set of benchmarks, and the results indicate that our approach is feasible and can use cryptography in efficient, nontrivial ways.

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