Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2014/342

Proposing Individualization of the design of cryptographic hardware accelerators as countermeasure against structure and side channel analysis

Zoya Dyka, Thomas Basmer, Christian Wittke and Peter Langendoerfer

Abstract: Side channel and fault attacks take advantage from the fact that the behavior of crypto implementations can be observed and provide hints that simplify revealing keys. These attacks are normally prepared by analyzing devices that are identical to the real target. Here we propose to individualize the design of cryptographic devices in order to prevent attacks that use identical devices. We implemented three different designs that provide exactly the same cryptographic function, i.e. an ECC kP multiplication. The synthesis and power simulation results show clear differences in the area consumed as well as in the power traces. We envision that this type of protection mechanism is relevant e.g. for wireless sensor networks from which devices can easily be stolen for further analysis in the lab.

Category / Keywords: implementation / elliptic curve cryptography, individualization of cryptographic hardware architectures, countermeasures against side-channel attacks

Date: received 15 May 2014

Contact author: dyka at ihp-microelectronics com

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Version: 20140519:162917 (All versions of this report)

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