A Qualitative Security Analysis of a New Class of 3-D Integrated Crypto Co-processors

  • Jonathan Valamehr
  • Ted Huffmire
  • Cynthia Irvine
  • Ryan Kastner
  • Çetin Kaya Koç
  • Timothy Levin
  • Timothy Sherwood
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6805)


3-D integration presents many new opportunities for architects and embedded systems designers. However, 3-D integration has not yet been explored by the cryptographic hardware community. Traditionally, crypto co-processors have been implemented as a separate die or by utilizing one or more cores in a chip multiprocessor. These methods have their drawbacks and limitations in terms of tamper-resistance, side-channel immunity and performance. In this work we propose a new class of co-processors that are “snapped-on” to the main processor using 3-D integration, and we investigate their security ramifications. These 3-D co-processors hold many advantages over previous implementations. This paper begins with an overview of 3-D integration and its prior applications. We then outline security threat models relevant to crypto co-processors and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using a dedicated 3-D crypto co-processor compared to traditional, commodity, off-chip crypto co-processors. We also discuss the performance improvements that can be gained from using a 3-D approach.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathan Valamehr
    • 1
  • Ted Huffmire
    • 2
  • Cynthia Irvine
    • 2
  • Ryan Kastner
    • 3
  • Çetin Kaya Koç
    • 1
    • 4
  • Timothy Levin
    • 2
  • Timothy Sherwood
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA
  2. 2.Naval Postgraduate SchoolUSA
  3. 3.University of CaliforniaSan DiegoUSA
  4. 4.Istanbul Şehir UniversityTurkey

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