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Dark Crystal [0] is such a social key management system. It utilizes Shamir's secret sharing over a variety of distributed protocols (like scuttlebutt or briar) to allow you to break your secret (i.e. private key) up into "shards" and share them with your friends. Then when it's needed, you can retrieve it by having a subset of those friends submit their shard.

[0] https://darkcrystal.pw/






Somewhat OT but it's a shame the improvements on Shamir's Secret Sharing are rare to find in the wild and everyone still goes straight to SSS. Despite having some neat cryptographic guarantees there's still a few downsides to the scheme which first he first described in the 70's(!)

Adept Secret Sharing (ADSS) by Bellare, Dai and Rogaway is a significant advance, hope more people consider it in future.

Though I don't think there is many implementations around.

https://eprint.iacr.org/2020/800.pdf


Interesting, thanks for pointing this out! Do you have any insights on how hard it is to implement? I'm not familiar enough with ADSS to tell whether it's worth the innovation token. [0]

[0]: https://mcfunley.com/choose-boring-technology


> whether it's worth the innovation token

That's a fair call, Shamir's secret sharing is pleasantly simple to use and understand.

Read the paper a while ago now but the scheme is still all fundamentally built on SSS, the auth, error checking and privacy layers are on top, so it's not a complete rework of what currently exists, more just some additions. Quite sure people have written some (perhaps all?) of these extras already in concert with regular secret sharing.




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