Hardware Security

Course: ESE6800

Units: 1.0 CU
Terms: Spring 2024
When: MW 1:45pm--3:15pm
Where: TBD
Instructor: DeHon

Undergraduate CIS2400, recommended: (CIS4710/5710) and (CIS3800 or CIS5480)
Graduaterecommended: (CIS4710/5710) and (CIS3800 or CIS5480)

Catalog Level Description:

Modern computing devices and infrastructure manage and mediate critical systems and important information. How do we assure that these systems are available when we need them, are used only as intended, and only allow changes and disclosure of data as intended? Contemporary evidence demonstrates that this is quite hard and few systems provide adequate protection against misuse. The root of many of these vulnerabilities, as well as many potential solutions to address them, lie in the design of the hardware that supports the systems. In this seminar, we review attacks and vulnerabilities and various attempts and techniques to address them. We lay the groundwork to go beyond reactive responses and explore how we can systematically address security from the hardware up. We'll review traditional challenges (e.g. buffer overflow, control flow hijacking), information leakage (e.g. timing, power consumption, RF emissions), emerging side-channel leakage (e.g. SPECTRE/Meltdown), and physical attacks (e.g., RowHammer, power, cryo) as well as well as various approaches to address them (e.g., Virtual Memory, Virtual Machines, capabilities, tagging, obfuscation, encryption). Concerns and solutions will include processor design, as well as custom hardware, networking, systems, and SoCs.

Preliminary Course Logistics

To be refined:
This offering will be a seminar-style course focused around reading and discussion of key papers from the literature. Students will be expected to read, discuss, and critique papers. There will be a final, research-oriented project on a topic related to hardware security.
Last modified: Fri Oct 27 17:37:31 EDT 2023