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Mitigating information leakage during critical communication using S*FSM

Mitigating information leakage during critical communication using S*FSM

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Security-centric components and systems, such as System-on-Chip early-boot communication protocols and ultra-specific lightweight devices, require a departure from minimalist design constructs. The need for built-in protection mechanisms, at all levels of design, is paramount to providing cost-effective, efficient, secure systems. In this work, Securely derived Finite State Machines (S*FSM) and power-aware S*FSM are proposed and studied. Overall results show that to provide an S*FSM, the typical FSM requires a 50% increase in the number of states and a 57% increase in the number of product terms needed to define the state transitions. These increases translate to a minimum encoding space increase of 70%, raising the average encoding length from 4.8 bits to 7.9 bits. When factoring in relaxed structural constraints for power and space mitigation, the respective increases of 53 and 67% raise the average number of bits needed to 7.3 and 7.9. Regarding power savings, current minimisation is possible for both FSMs and S*FSMs through the addition of encoding constraints with average current reductions of 30 and 70%, respectively. Overall, a power-constrained S*FSM consumes about 5% more power than insecure FSMs with binary encodings, though with a penalty of a 95% increase in layout area.


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