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Computational Electromagnetics for a Systematic Security Evaluation and Countermeasure of Electromagnetic Analysis (EMA) on Electronic Security Devices


OBJECTIVE: Develop and demonstrate simulation tools, based on computational EM, to examine EM emissions from sensitive electronic devices, to identify physical leakages and design flaws, and to develop countermeasures and assess their effectiveness. DESCRIPTION: Side-channel attack (SCA) vulnerability has posed a serious issue to the security of cryptographic devices [1]. The electromagnetic analysis (EMA) based side-channel attack is an efficient and powerful technique, by exploiting electromagnetic leakages emanated during a cryptographic operation, to retrieve secret information pertaining to the cryptographic implementations within an electronic package. It is well known that small and sensitive electromagnetic sensors can be used to extract data emanating from electronic devices. As we know, the electromagnetic radiations emitted from integrated circuits are mainly due to the displacement currents radiated through the layers, the wires, and the vias of circuit boards. Therefore, the attack sensors also intercept electromagnetic fields which are uncorrelated to the attacked crypto-processors. The current practice against the side channel attacks of electronic devices has been to evaluate the security of the hardware implementation after design and manufacture. In consequence, this iterative build-and-test process is usually very time consuming and costly. With the advances of the modern computer technology and computational electromagnetics it is now possible to use fast full-wave electromagnetic methods to model high speed interconnects and passive components in electronic circuitries [2]. This project seeks to develop and demonstrate an electromagnetic analysis, attack, and countermeasure simulation software which will integrate a 3-D EM simulator to calculate electromagnetic radiation from electronic packages and an EMA data processing simulator to model various kinds of EMA attacks including SEMA and DEMA [3]. The EM radiation simulator can generate an electromagnetic radiation map to locate electromagnetic leakage spots and identify susceptibility in the design. The EMA simulator can be applied to simulate the electromagnetic attacks and their subsequent responses. The computational software developed can be used to examine electromagnetic emissions of electronic security devices and identify design flaws during the design stage. It also can be applied to develop countermeasures of EMA and assess their effectiveness. PHASE I: Determine the appropriate computational electromagnetic models and develop prototype software to illustrate the effectiveness of electromagnetic attack analysis on an FPGA device. PHASE II: Extend the software developed in Phase I to include more electronic components in an FPGA package. Demonstrate and validate the developed software by comparing with emission measurement data from the electronic device. PHASE III: The developed software can be applied to counter the electromagnetic analysis attack techniques and secure the military sensitive integrated circuit devices, and can be applied in commercial applications including the consumer security devices and VLSI circuit design. REFERENCES: 1. K. Gandolfi, C. Mourtel, and F. Olivier,"Electromagnetic Analysis: Concrete Results,"Proc. CHES, LNCS, vol. 2162, Springer, pp. 251-261, 2001. 2. B. Wu, X. Gu, L. Tsang, and M.B. Ritter,"Electromagnetic Modeling of Massively Coupled through Silicon Vias for 3-D Interconnects,"Microwave Opt. Technol. Lett., vol. 53, pp. 1204-1206, 2011. 3. Y.C. Kim, E.D. Trias, and D.R. Slaman,"Side Channel Analysis Countermeasures Using Obfuscated Instructions,"Proc. ICCST, pp. 42-51, San Jose, CA, 2010.
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