Computationally efficient searchable symmetric encryption

P.P. Liesdonk, van, S. Sedghi, J.M. Doumen, P.H. Hartel, W. Jonker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

155 Citations (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)


Searchable encryption is a technique that allows a client to store documents on a server in encrypted form. Stored documents can be retrieved selectively while revealing as little information as possible to the server. In the symmetric searchable encryption domain, the storage and the retrieval are performed by the same client. Most conventional searchable encryption schemes suffer from two disadvantages. First, searching the stored documents takes time linear in the size of the database, and/or uses heavy arithmetic operations. Secondly, the existing schemes do not consider adaptive attackers; a search-query will reveal information even about documents stored in the future. If they do consider this, it is at a significant cost to the performance of updates. In this paper we propose a novel symmetric searchable encryption scheme that offers searching at constant time in the number of unique keywords stored on the server. We present two variants of the basic scheme which differ in the efficiency of search and storage. We show how each scheme could be used in a personal health record system.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSecure Data Management (7th VLDB workshop, SDM 2010, Singapore, September 17, 2010. Proceedings)
EditorsW. Jonker, M. Petkovic
Place of PublicationBerlin
ISBN (Print)978-3-642-15545-1
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743


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