Paper 2021/109

Sequential Logic Encryption Against Model Checking Attack

Amin Rezaei and Hai Zhou


Due to high IC design costs and emergence of countless untrusted foundries, logic encryption has been taken into consideration more than ever. In state-of-the-art logic encryption works, a lot of performance is sold to guarantee security against both the SAT-based and the removal attacks. However, the SAT-based attack cannot decrypt the sequential circuits if the scan chain is protected or if the unreachable states encryption is adopted. Instead, these security schemes can be defeated by the model checking attack that searches iteratively for different input sequences to put the activated IC to the desired reachable state. In this paper, we propose a practical logic encryption approach to defend against the model checking attack on sequential circuits. The robustness of the proposed approach is demonstrated by experiments on around fifty benchmarks.

Available format(s)
Publication info
Published elsewhere. Proceedings of 24th Design, Automation & Test in Europe Conference & Exhibition (DATE), 2021
Model Checking AttackSequential Logic EncryptionSequential TransformationSequential Encryption
Contact author(s)
me @ aminrezaei com
2021-02-01: received
Short URL
Creative Commons Attribution


      author = {Amin Rezaei and Hai Zhou},
      title = {Sequential Logic Encryption Against Model Checking Attack},
      howpublished = {Cryptology ePrint Archive, Paper 2021/109},
      year = {2021},
      note = {\url{}},
      url = {}
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