Special Issue "Blockchain: Security, Challenges, and Opportunities"

A special issue of Entropy (ISSN 1099-4300).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2019.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Luis Javier Garcia Villalba
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Group of Analysis, Security and Systems (GASS), Department of Software Engineering and Artificial Intelligence (DISIA), Faculty of Computer Science and Engineering, Office 431, Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), Calle Profesor José García Santesmases, 9, Ciudad Universitaria, 28040 Madrid, Spain
Tel. +34 91 394 76 38
Interests: Anonymity; Computer Security; Cyber Security; Cryptography; Information Security; Intrusion Detection; Malware; Privacy; Trust
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Mario Blaum
E-Mail
Guest Editor
IBM Almaden Research Center, 650 Harry Rd, San Jose, CA 95120, USA
Interests: error-correcting codes; fault tolerance; parallel processing; cryptography; modulation codes for magnetic recording; timing algorithms; holographic storage; parallel communications; neural networks; finite group theory
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Ana Lucila Sandoval Orozco
E-Mail
Guest Editor
Cybersecurity INCT Unit 6, Decision Technologies Laboratory-LATITUDE, Electrical Engineering Department (ENE), Technology College, University of Brasília (UnB), Brasília-DF, CEP 70910-900, Brazil
Interests: computer and network security; multimedia forensics; error-correcting codes; information theory
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

Bitcoin is one of the most popular cryptocurrencies nowadays. For its operation, it uses a technology known as Blockchain. This technology is not unique to Bitcoin; since its birth, many of the so-called altcoins have appeared using the same blockchain technology or similar. Blockchain has attracted extensive attention from both industry and academia.

Industry and academia have started to apply blockchain in other many areas besides cryptocurrencies, expanding the use of this technology. This use expansion carries challenges such as the security and privacy issues of using this technology. These challenges have been analyzed by both academy and industry. Additionally, there is an urgent need to adjust the privacy and regulatory requirements of blockchain to fulfill current data protection laws.

Information theory has been applied for over a half a century now, starting from the pioneering work of Shannon. Based on this motivation, this Special Issue invites researchers in all related fields (including but not limited to information theory, entropy, cryptography, cybersecurity, machine learning, and pattern recognition) to present original and new developments on information theory for current and novel blockchain applications, and to join us in a quest for solutions to solve current and, if possible, future problems on the use of this technology. Potential topics of interest to this Special Issue are listed below. Submissions can include original research, dataset collection, and benchmark or critical surveys.

This Special Issue is focused on cutting-edge research from both academia and industry, with a particular emphasis on novel techniques. Only technical papers describing previously unpublished, original, state-of-the-art research, and not currently under review by a conference or a journal, will be considered. We will recommend the submission of multimedia with each paper, as it significantly increases the visibility, downloads, and citations of articles.

Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Accountability and auditing in blockchain and cryptocurrency;
  • Adversarial training and defensive distillation;
  • Attacks against machine learning;
  • Attacks on blockchain-based systems;
  • Blockchain analysis;
  • Blockchain application and implementation;
  • Blockchain applications;
  • Blockchain operation and governance;
  • Blockchain security;
  • Blockchain technologies;
  • Challenges of machine learning for cyber security;
  • Consensus algorithms;
  • Cryptocurrencies;
  • Cryptocurrency pricing bubbles;
  • The economic significance of cryptocurrency volatility;
  • Energy consumption issues;
  • Entropy;
  • Ethics of machine learning for cyber security applications;
  • Generative adversarial models;
  • Governance models and experiences;
  • Identity management;
  • Information theory;
  • The interoperability of blockchains;
  • IoT Forensic;
  • Lightweight protocols based on blockchain;
  • One-shot learning; continuous learning;
  • The performance of blockchain-based systems;
  • Potential topics include but are not limited to;
  • Privacy and anonymity on blockchain;
  • The role of formal and informal institutions in establishing cryptocurrency markets;
  • The scalability of blockchain-based systems;
  • Scalable machine learning for cyber security;
  • Secure distributed consensus;
  • Security- and privacy-enhancing technologies for blockchain and cryptocurrency;
  • Smart contracts;
  • Smart contracts analysis;
  • Transactions analysis;
  • Transparency (or lack thereof) of blockchain technology and concomitant legal, ethical, and regulatory issues.

Prof. Luis Javier Garcia Villalba
Dr. Mario Blaum
Dr. Ana Lucila Sandoval Orozco
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Entropy is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
A Comprehensive Study of the Key Enumeration Problem
Entropy 2019, 21(10), 972; https://doi.org/10.3390/e21100972 - 05 Oct 2019
Abstract
In this paper, we will study the key enumeration problem, which is connected to the key recovery problem posed in the cold boot attack setting. In this setting, an attacker with physical access to a computer may obtain noisy data of a cryptographic [...] Read more.
In this paper, we will study the key enumeration problem, which is connected to the key recovery problem posed in the cold boot attack setting. In this setting, an attacker with physical access to a computer may obtain noisy data of a cryptographic secret key of a cryptographic scheme from main memory via this data remanence attack. Therefore, the attacker would need a key-recovery algorithm to reconstruct the secret key from its noisy version. We will first describe this attack setting and then pose the problem of key recovery in a general way and establish a connection between the key recovery problem and the key enumeration problem. The latter problem has already been studied in the side-channel attack literature, where, for example, the attacker might procure scoring information for each byte of an Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) key from a side-channel attack and then want to efficiently enumerate and test a large number of complete 16-byte candidates until the correct key is found. After establishing such a connection between the key recovery problem and the key enumeration problem, we will present a comprehensive review of the most outstanding key enumeration algorithms to tackle the latter problem, for example, an optimal key enumeration algorithm (OKEA) and several nonoptimal key enumeration algorithms. Also, we will propose variants to some of them and make a comparison of them, highlighting their strengths and weaknesses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Blockchain: Security, Challenges, and Opportunities)
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Open AccessArticle
Towards Quantum-Secured Permissioned Blockchain: Signature, Consensus, and Logic
Entropy 2019, 21(9), 887; https://doi.org/10.3390/e21090887 - 12 Sep 2019
Abstract
While Blockchain technology is universally considered as a significant technology for the near future, some of its pillars are under a threat of another thriving technology, Quantum Computing. In this paper, we propose important safeguard measures against this threat by developing a framework [...] Read more.
While Blockchain technology is universally considered as a significant technology for the near future, some of its pillars are under a threat of another thriving technology, Quantum Computing. In this paper, we propose important safeguard measures against this threat by developing a framework of a quantum-secured, permissioned blockchain called Logicontract (LC). LC adopts a digital signature scheme based on Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) mechanisms and a vote-based consensus algorithm to achieve consensus on the blockchain. The main contribution of this paper is in the development of: (1) unconditionally secure signature scheme for LC which makes it immune to the attack of quantum computers; (2) scalable consensus protocol used by LC; (3) logic-based scripting language for the creation of smart contracts on LC; (4) quantum-resistant lottery protocol which illustrates the power and usage of LC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Blockchain: Security, Challenges, and Opportunities)
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Open AccessArticle
Coin.AI: A Proof-of-Useful-Work Scheme for Blockchain-Based Distributed Deep Learning
Entropy 2019, 21(8), 723; https://doi.org/10.3390/e21080723 - 25 Jul 2019
Abstract
One decade ago, Bitcoin was introduced, becoming the first cryptocurrency and establishing the concept of “blockchain” as a distributed ledger. As of today, there are many different implementations of cryptocurrencies working over a blockchain, with different approaches and philosophies. However, many of them [...] Read more.
One decade ago, Bitcoin was introduced, becoming the first cryptocurrency and establishing the concept of “blockchain” as a distributed ledger. As of today, there are many different implementations of cryptocurrencies working over a blockchain, with different approaches and philosophies. However, many of them share one common feature: they require proof-of-work to support the generation of blocks (mining) and, eventually, the generation of money. This proof-of-work scheme often consists in the resolution of a cryptography problem, most commonly breaking a hash value, which can only be achieved through brute-force. The main drawback of proof-of-work is that it requires ridiculously large amounts of energy which do not have any useful outcome beyond supporting the currency. In this paper, we present a theoretical proposal that introduces a proof-of-useful-work scheme to support a cryptocurrency running over a blockchain, which we named Coin.AI. In this system, the mining scheme requires training deep learning models, and a block is only mined when the performance of such model exceeds a threshold. The distributed system allows for nodes to verify the models delivered by miners in an easy way (certainly much more efficiently than the mining process itself), determining when a block is to be generated. Additionally, this paper presents a proof-of-storage scheme for rewarding users that provide storage for the deep learning models, as well as a theoretical dissertation on how the mechanics of the system could be articulated with the ultimate goal of democratizing access to artificial intelligence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Blockchain: Security, Challenges, and Opportunities)
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