Contactless Electromagnetic Active Attack on Ring Oscillator Based True Random Number Generator

Abstract : True random number generators (TRNGs) are ubiquitous in data security as one of basic cryptographic primitives. They are primarily used as generators of con fidential keys, to initialize vectors, to pad values, but also as random masks generators in some side channel attacks countermeasures. As such, they must have good statistical properties, be unpredictable and robust against attacks. This paper presents a contactless and local active attack on ring oscillators (ROs) based TRNGs using electromagnetic fields. Experiments show that in a TRNG featuring fifty ROs, the impact of a local electromagnetic emanation on the ROs is so strong, that it is possible to lock them on the injected signal and thus to control the monobit bias of the TRNG output even when low power electromagnetic fields are exploited. These results confi rm practically that the electromagnetic waves used for harmonic signal injection may represent a serious security threat for secure circuits that embed RO-based TRNG.
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Submitted on : Monday, May 21, 2012 - 1:16:49 PM
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Pierre Bayon, Lilian Bossuet, Alain Aubert, Viktor Fischer, François Poucheret, et al.. Contactless Electromagnetic Active Attack on Ring Oscillator Based True Random Number Generator. COSADE: Constructive Side-Channel Analysis and Secure Design, May 2012, Darmstadt, Germany. pp.151-166, ⟨10.1007/978-3-642-29912-4_12⟩. ⟨ujm-00699618⟩

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