Embedded Trusted Computing with Authenticated Non-volatile Memory

  • Dries Schellekens
  • Pim Tuyls
  • Bart Preneel
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 4968)


Trusted computing is an emerging technology to improve the trustworthiness of computing platforms. The Trusted Computing Group has proposed specifications for a Trusted Platform Module and a Mobile Trusted Module. One of the key problems when integrating these trusted modules into an embedded system-on-chip design, is the lack of on-chip multiple-time-programmable non-volatile memory. In this paper, we describe a solution to protect the trusted module’s persistent state in external memory against non-invasive attacks. We introduce a minimal cryptographic protocol to achieve an authenticated channel between the trusted module and the external non-volatile memory. A MAC algorithm has to be added to the external memory to ensure authenticity. As a case study, we discuss trusted computing on reconfigurable hardware. In order to make our solution applicable to the low-end FPGA series which has no security measures on board, we present a solution that only relies on the reverse engineering complexity of the undocumented bitstream encoding and uses a physically unclonable function for one-time-programmable key storage. Clearly, this solution is also applicable to high-end series with special security measures on board. Our solution also supports field updates of the trusted module.


External Memory Trusted Platform Module Trust Computing Physical Unclonable Function Helper Data 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dries Schellekens
    • 1
  • Pim Tuyls
    • 1
    • 2
  • Bart Preneel
    • 1
  1. 1.ESAT-SCD/COSICKatholieke Universiteit LeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Philips Research LaboratoriesEindhovenThe Netherlands

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