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Consulting Services

Our consulting services include design services, product evaluations, and DPA training workshops. By helping clients define their security objectives and deploy effective solutions, we can minimize the costs associated with conservative security practices.

Design Services

Our Cryptography Research division can contribute to all portions of secure product design – from concept generation and protocol design to product development and operational integration.

Our in-house cryptographers have extensive experience with deployed security protocols, software, and hardware. We understand tightly-constrained systems that require mobility, tamper resistance, rigid cost constraints, and renewable security. Example projects include:

  • Design of cryptographic protocols for stored value, communication, prepaid cellular telephone, and content protection systems.
  • Architecture and implementation of fully-functional prototype for securely distributing content in digital cinema environment.
  • Development of firmware to secure embedded systems against cloning or modification.
  • Cryptographic design of SSL 3.0 – the world’s most widely used security protocol.
  • ASIC design for high-threat environments.

Evaluation Services

Evaluations are crucial for systems where attacks are anticipated or where failure scenarios may be extremely difficult to manage. By working to identify and analyze all security risks under a specified threat model, our evaluators can help anticipate and assess the likelihood of system failure.

  • Architecture reviews: Set-top boxes, PC platforms, handheld devices, authentication tokens
  • Specification reviews
  • Forensic analysis – identification of methods used and weaknesses in pirate pay TV equipment and in financial fraud
  • Differential Power Analysis evaluations of smartcards and secure tokens
  • Component reviews: Random number generators, cryptographic cores
  • Protocol reviews: Financial transactions, secure messaging, wireless applications
  • Infrastructure reviews: Code update, secure renewability
Introduction to Side-Channel Attacks eBook

Introduction to Side-Channel Attacks

Side-channel attacks conducted against electronic gear are relatively simple and inexpensive to execute. Such attacks include simple power analysis (SPA) and Differential Power Analysis (DPA). As all physical electronic systems routinely leak information, effective side-channel countermeasures should be implemented at the design stage to ensure protection of sensitive keys and data.

Research Efforts

Our research efforts identify new and more efficient ways to protect information in real-world situations.

Content Security Research Initiative
Read about results from a multi-year research effort to study technical solutions and next-generation methods for controlling piracy.

Record Breaking DES Key Search
Our researchers designed a record-breaking DES Key Search Machine and won the RSA DES Challenge on July 15, 1998 after searching for 56 hours

DPA Training Workshops

Our security experts provide technical tutorials, hands-on workshops, and training seminars with facilitated discussion. Clients use our training to understand security-critical challenges and help project teams transition to new security problems. Training sessions are typically 1-4 working days and can be delivered at your office or at our San Francisco office.

To learn more about our workshops and sign up, click here.

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Protecting Electronic Systems from Side-Channel Attacks

Side-channel attacks comprise a wide range of techniques including Differential Power Analysis, Simple Power Analysis, Simple Electromagnetic Analysis, Differential Electromagnetic Analysis, Correlation Power Analysis and Correlation Electromagnetic Analysis. An effective layer of side-channel countermeasures should therefore be implemented via hardware (DPA resistant cores), software (DPA resistant libraries) or both. After layered countermeasures have been implemented, systems should be carefully evaluated to confirm the cessation of sensitive side-channel leakage.


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DPA Countermeasures

DPA Countermeasures are fundamental techniques for protecting against Differential Power Analysis (DPA) and related side-channel attacks. Consisting of a broad range of software, hardware, and protocol techniques, DPA Countermeasures include reducing leakage, introducing amplitude and temporal noise, balancing hardware and software, incorporating randomness, and implementing protocol level countermeasures.

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