Centauri: Practical Rowhammer Fingerprinting Demonstrated On DRAM Modules (UC Davis)


A technical paper titled “Centauri: Practical Rowhammer Fingerprinting” was published by researchers at UC Davis.


“Fingerprinters leverage the heterogeneity in hardware and software configurations to extract a device fingerprint. Fingerprinting countermeasures attempt to normalize these attributes such that they present a uniform fingerprint across different devices or present different fingerprints for the same device each time. We present Centauri, a Rowhammer fingerprinting approach that can build a unique and stable fingerprints even across devices with homogeneous or normalized/obfuscated hardware and software configurations. To this end, Centauri leverages the process variation in the underlying manufacturing process that gives rise to unique distributions of Rowhammer-induced bit flips across different DRAM modules. Centauri’s design and implementation is able to overcome memory allocation constrains without requiring root privileges. Our evaluation on a test bed of about one hundred DRAM modules shows that system achieves 99.91% fingerprinting accuracy. Centauri’s fingerprints are also stable with daily experiments over a period of 10 days revealing no loss in fingerprinting accuracy. We show that Centauri is efficient, taking as little as 9.92 seconds to extract a fingerprint. Centauri is the first practical Rowhammer fingerprinting approach that is able to extract unique and stable fingerprints efficiently and at-scale.”

Find the technical paper here. Published June 2023 (preprint).

Venugopalan, Hari, Kaustav Goswami, Zainul Abi Din, Jason Lowe-Power, Samuel T. King, and Zubair Shafiq. “Centauri: Practical Rowhammer Fingerprinting.” arXiv preprint arXiv:2307.00143 (2023).

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