Fingerprinting Codes and Related Combinatorial Structures
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Fingerprinting codes were introduced by Boneh and Shaw in 1998 as a method of copyright control. The desired properties of a good fingerprinting code has been found to have deep connections to combinatorial structures such as error-correcting codes and cover-free families. The particular property that motivated our research is called "frameproof". This has been studied extensively when the alphabet size q is at least as large as the colluder size w. Much less is known about the case q < w, and we prove several interesting properties about the binary case q = 2 in this thesis. When the length of the code N is relatively small, we have shown that the number of codewords n cannot exceed N, which is a tight bound since the n = N case can be satisfied a trivial construction using permutation matrices. Furthermore, the only possible candidates are equivalent to this trivial construction. Generalization to a restricted parameter set of separating hash families is also given. As a consequence, the above result motivates the question of when a non-trivial construction can be found, and we give some definitive answers by considering combinatorial designs. In particular, we give a necessary and sufficient condition for a symmetric design to be a binary 3-frameproof code, and provide example classes of symmetric designs that satisfy or fail this condition. Finally, we apply our results to a problem of constructing short binary frameproof codes.