Reconfigurable Physically Unclonable Function (PUF) Based Security

Tech ID: 28868 / UC Case 2018-088-0

Brief Description

A platform for highly secure and reconfigurable hardware-intrinsic security primitives, physically unclonable function (PUF), based on the emergent analog RRAM crossbar technology.

Background

The ever-expanding world of the internet and information technology has led to an increase of interconnected networks and sharing of valuable information online. As the amount of information disseminated online grows so does the need for a protected and safe way to store this information. Conventional cryptographic and “secret key” approaches are vulnerable to physical and side-channeling attacks making them unreliable security measures. Therefore, a need exists for a more dependable and impenetrable form of security.

Description

Researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara have designed a platform for highly secure and reconfigurable hardware-intrinsic security primitives, physically unclonable function (PUF), based on the emergent analog RRAM crossbar technology. These primitives have near ideal diffuseness, uniformity, and uniqueness. Its simple and low-cost design, small footprint, CMOS integration compatibility, and instance reconfigurability make this technology superior to other PUF hardware and highly suitable for security applications. Moreover, they have designed an architecture for PUFs based on analog Flash memory blocks. This architecture, based on matured integrated floating gate technology offers low-cost CMOS-compatible solutions. With flash-based memory arrays already in production and their anticipated application in computational engines, the reliable, embeddable security apparatus will be of great value. These hardware solutions have wide-ranging applications including IC identification, secure channel communication, and data encryption without the need of “key” storage in auxiliary memory, making it seemingly impenetrable from attack.

Advantages

  • Reconfigurable
  • Low design cost
  • Programmable
  • Enhanced resilience against attack
  • Can be easily integrated into existing devices

Applications

  • Semiconductors
  • IC identification
  • Secure channel communication
  • Data encryption
  • Anti-counterfeiting
  • Military equipment

Contact

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Inventors

  • Ahmadabadi, Hussein Nili
  • Fahimi, Zahra
  • Mahmoodi, Mohammad Reza
  • Strukov, Dmitri B.

Other Information

Keywords

Physically unclonable function, PUF, security, cryptographic, security primitives, RRAM, CMOS, semiconductors, IC identification, data encryption, indtelecom, indansens, indmicroelec, indsoftw

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