[Cryptography] Encrypted/Obfuscated Accounting ??

Henry Baker hbaker1 at pipeline.com
Mon Jun 6 14:06:33 EDT 2016

FYI --


H.R.942 - Audit the Pentagon Act of 2015


How Not to Audit the Pentagon 
Five Decades Later, the Military Waste Machine Is Running Full Speed Ahead 
By William D. Hartung

I realize that obfuscated accounting was invented only a few minutes after double-entry bookkeeping was invented, but the U.S. DoD has taken obfuscated accounting to the highest levels.

Is there a mathematical theory of *obfuscated accounting* ?

I'm asking a theoretical question about the possibility of setting up a more-or-less standard double-entry bookkeeping system in such a way that the information is stored and is accessible, but provides little or no actual information about what is going on.

Clearly, the names of all of the entries have to be obscured, but that obviously isn't enough, because someone with reasonable a priori knowledge could figure out just from the relative ratios of the numbers which accounts were which.

There would also have to be a spreading of expenditures among a whole bunch of other accounts, so that even relatively large expenditures could still be hidden.

I realize that these obfuscation practices go on in all of the largest corporations and govt agencies, so I was wondering if anyone had ever studied the *mathematics* or *science* or *engineering* of such accounting obfuscation?

It is conceivable that a real audit might be NP-complete under an appropriate accounting model.

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