Cloud Computing refers to the long dreamed vision of computing as a utility, which treats IT services as a commodity with great efficiency, scalability, and minimal management cost. It economically impels a fundamental shift in how data services are deployed and delivered, enabling flexible and dynamic service outsourcing while reducing capital cost commitments for hardware, software, and operational overhead therein. Despite the tremendous benefits, outsourcing data service to the commercial public cloud is also depriving customers' direct control over the systems that manage their data, raising security and privacy as the primary obstacles to the adoption of the cloud.
To address these challenges and thus motivate the wide adoption of the cloud, our research explores secure and privacy-assured data service outsourcing mechanisms that are usable, scalable, and meet performance goals. Specifically, we target on deploying the most fundamental data services, including data utilization, data sharing, data storage, and data computation outsourcing on the commercial public cloud, and investigate the following challenging questions: 1) How can encrypted cloud data be effectively utilized or searched with strong privacy assurance, when high service-level performance is simultaneously demanded by large numbers of data users and files; 2) How would data owner reliably and efficiently enforce the dissemination of sensitive cloud data among large number of users in a fine-grained and scalable way, when the data no longer locally reside within owners' trusted domain; 3) How can a privacy-preserving cloud storage auditing mechanism be enabled, such that it maintains strong guarantee of outsourced storage correctness on behalf of the data owners while not compromising owner's data privacy; 4) How can a computationally weak end-user securely outsource expensive data computation workloads to cloud, such that the mechanism protects both confidentiality of the sensitive workload information and integrity of the computation result while simultaneously ensuring end-users' substantial computational savings.
Towards secure and privacy-assured data service outsourcing is fundamental to the success of cloud computing deployment. Our research is to satisfy this critical need and expected to have a high impact on the successful deployment of cloud computing in practice. Such a design will provide various means for cloud customers to assess risk and gain trust in Cloud. Such a design would also make it easy for cloud service providers to securely and effectively deliver value from the cloud infrastructure to its both enterprise and individual customers. You will find more detailed description of our research here.