Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2019/928

Blockchain-enabled Cryptographically-secure Hardware Obfuscation

Fatemeh Ganji and Shahin Tajik and Domenic Forte and Jean-Pierre Seifert

Abstract: Electronic chips in consumer, industrial, and military applications are targeted by untrusted entities in the design and fabrication process, aiming at reverse-engineering and Intellectual Property (IP) piracy. Hardware obfuscation techniques, namely logic locking and IC camouflaging, have been developed to mislead an adversary hoping to reverse engineer the netlist and extract the functionality. However, virtually all existing hardware obfuscation schemes developed over the last decade have been shown to be vulnerable to oracle-guided attacks, e.g., SAT and machine learning attacks. Moreover, most of these schemes rely on an ideal tamper- and read-proof memory to store the key used to unlock the circuit after manufacturing. In this work, we propose two novel cryptographically-secure hardware obfuscation schemes using garbled circuits, which are compatible with current circuit synthesis and fabrication tools. Our first construction does not require any secure hardware with tamper- and read-proof memory. In this case, the security of the obfuscation is guaranteed by Proof-of-Stack blockchain protocols and witness encryption schemes. However, for our second construction, we assume the existence of secure memory in the hardware to achieve higher performance and less overhead. Both constructions are inspired by program obfuscation and one-time program techniques enabling us to selectively encrypt and garble some IP cores during integration as well as manufacturing to prevent IP piracy. Furthermore, with the help of our constructions, we can realize one-time and pay-per-use hardware, where a user can use the electronic circuit for a limited amount of time.

Category / Keywords: applications / IP Piracy; Logic Locking; Hardware Obfuscation; Garbled Circuits; Witness Encryption; Blockchains

Date: received 14 Aug 2019

Contact author: fganji at ufl edu

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20190818:154730 (All versions of this report)

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