Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2022/260

Advances in Logic Locking: Past, Present, and Prospects

Hadi Mardani Kamali and Kimia Zamiri Azar and Farimah Farahmandi and Mark Tehranipoor

Abstract: Logic locking is a design concealment mechanism for protecting the IPs integrated into modern System-on-Chip (SoC) architectures from a wide range of hardware security threats at the IC manufacturing supply chain. Logic locking primarily helps the designer to protect the IPs against reverse engineering, IP piracy, overproduction, and unauthorized activation. For more than a decade, the research studies that carried out on this paradigm has been immense, in which the applicability, feasibility, and efficacy of the logic locking have been investigated, including metrics to assess the efficacy, impact of locking in different levels of abstraction, threat model definition, resiliency against physical attacks, tampering, and the application of machine learning. However, the security and strength of existing logic locking techniques have been constantly questioned by sophisticated logical and physical attacks that evolve in sophistication at the same rate as logic locking countermeasure approaches. By providing a comprehensive definition regarding the metrics, assumptions, and principles of logic locking, in this survey paper, we categorize the existing defenses and attacks to capture the most benefit from the logic locking techniques for IP protection, and illuminating the need for and giving direction to future research studies in this topic. This survey paper serves as a guide to quickly navigate and identify the state-of-the-art that should be considered and investigated for further studies on logic locking techniques, helping IP vendors, SoC designers, and researchers to be informed of the principles, fundamentals, and properties of logic locking.

Category / Keywords: Logic Locking

Date: received 26 Feb 2022

Contact author: h mardanikamali at ufl edu

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20220302:140658 (All versions of this report)

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