Anti-Counterfeit and Anti-Tamper Hardware Implementation using Hardware Obfuscation
Desai, Avinash R.
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Tampering and Reverse Engineering of a chip to extract the hardware Intellectual Property (IP) core or to inject malicious alterations is a major concern. First, offshore chip manufac- turing allows the design secrets of the IP cores to be transparent to the foundry and other entities along the production chain. Second, small malicious modifications to the design may not be detectable after fabrication without anti-tamper mechanisms. Counterfeit Inte- grated Circuits (ICs) also have become an important security issue in recent years, in which counterfeit ICs that perform incorrectly or sub-par to the expected can lead to catastrophic consequences in safety and/or mission-critical applications, in addition to the tremendous economic toll they incur to the semiconductor industry. Some techniques have been devel- oped in the past to improve the defense against such attacks but they tend to fall prey to the increasing power of the attacker. We present a new way to protect against tampering by a clever obfuscation of the design, which can be unlocked with a specific, dynamic path traversal. Hence, the functional mode of the controller is hidden with the help of obfuscated states, and the functional mode is made operational only on the formation of a specific interlocked Code-Word during state transition. A novel time-stamp is proposed that can provide the date at which the IC was manufactured for counterfeit detection. Furthermore, we propose a second layer of tamper resistance to the time-stamp circuit to make it even more difficult to modify. Results show that methods proposed offer higher levels of security with small area overhead. A side benefit is that any small alteration will be magnified via the obfuscated design proposed in these methods.
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