Safeguarding Automotive Electronics


Modern automobiles can have up to 100 Electronic Control Units (ECUs) depending on their class, make, and model, with the number of ECUs rising even higher in the case of electric vehicles. An ECU is an embedded system in the car’s electronics. They are used to control all the vehicle's functions, including engine, powertrain, transmission, brakes, suspension, dashboard, entertainment system ... » read more

Capabilities In CAP, CHERI, And Morello


At the recent Arm DevSummit, one of the presentations mentioned CHERI and the Arm Morello board in passing. This was in the context of using capabilities (perhaps) in some future Arm processors to increase the amount of memory safety, and to protect against vulnerabilities like Spectre and Meltdown. I'd never heard of either, so I was intrigued and decided to look into the details. But the f... » read more

Effective Configuration Of Security Tools


To do a job well, you need the right tools. But it’s just as important—perhaps even more so—to use those tools correctly. A hammer will make things worse in your construction project if you’re trying to use it as a screwdriver or a drill. The same is true in software development. The intricacies of coding and the fact that it’s done by humans means that throughout the software deve... » read more

Blockchain Attempts To Secure The Supply Chain


Blockchain technology is starting to be deployed more widely In the battle against counterfeiting, often coupled with component IDs to allow device authentication. Securing the supply chain is a complex challenge, particularly as more IP from more vendors in more locations makes its way into chips, packages or even systems. Being able to attest to the history of the device to prove its prove... » read more

IC Integrity Of Edge-Computing Processors: Meeting The Demands Of AI


If you ask most people, they would say that we’re living in an age of artificial intelligence (AI). But the reality is that we’re just getting started. The age of artificial intelligence is still in its infancy. So many of aspects of our lives involve technology but we’re still having to feed that technology or manually operate that technology in order get the results we want. Autonomous ... » read more

Establishing A Special Interest Group On Common Hardware Weaknesses


It seems like almost every week yet another hardware security vulnerability is announced. Just last week a team of researchers disclosed a new attack called “Platypus”, an acronym for "Power Leakage Attacks: Targeting Your Protected User Secrets.” This is another attack exploiting the simple fact that hardware sits below the conventional security abstractions and finding a vulnerability i... » read more

Uniquely Identifying PCBs, Subassemblies, And Packaging


Securing the semiconductor supply chain is becoming much more difficult as devices increasingly are disaggregated, a shift being forced on the industry due to the rising cost of scaling and the need for more customization and faster time to market. Individual component IDs are an important starting point for supply chain trust, but they are no longer sufficient. Those components will end up ... » read more

Disaggregation And Smarter Chips Shift Liability For Security


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss security on chips with Vic Kulkarni, vice president and chief strategist at Ansys; Jason Oberg, CTO and co-founder of Tortuga Logic; Pamela Norton, CEO and founder of Borsetta; Ron Perez, fellow and technical lead for security architecture at Intel; and Tim Whitfield, vice president of strategy at Arm. What follows are excerpts of that conversation,... » read more

Making IC Test Faster And More Accessible: Part 2


Recently, my colleague Robert Ruiz described a new approach to scan test that utilizes the high-speed I/O (HSIO) ports that exist on most chips. The benefits of this new approach include reduced test time and cost thanks to the high-speed interface. Simplified pin electronics and tester setup are also benefits, as is the ability to run manufacturing tests in the field in support of silicon life... » read more

Who’s Got The Hot Potato?


In COVID-19 times, gathering a few friends in a circle and playing “hot potato” may sound like a dream. For car manufacturers and the automotive electronics supply chain, handling the cybersecurity hot potato is not quite a nightmare but certainly not a fun game. Companies like Volkswagen, Fiat, and Ford have much expertise in managing a complex supply chain and post-sale support. Most car ... » read more

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