Stealthy Dopant-Level Hardware Trojans


In recent years, hardware Trojans have drawn the attention of governments and industry as well as the scienti_c community. One of the main concerns is that integrated circuits, e.g., for military or criticalinfrastructure applications, could be maliciously manipulated during the manufacturing process, which often takes place abroad. However, since there have been no reported hardware Trojans in practice yet, little is known about how such a Trojan would look like, and how di_cult it would be in practice to implement one.

In this paper we propose an extremely stealthy approach for implementing hardware Trojans below the gate level, and we evaluate their impact on the security of the target device. Instead of adding additional circuitry to the target design, we insert our hardware Trojans by changing the dopant polarity of existing transistors. Since the modi_ed circuit appears legitimate on all wiring layers (including all metal and polysilicon), our family of Trojans is resistant to most detection techniques, including _ne-grain optical inspection and checking against \golden chips".

We demonstrate the e_ectiveness of our approach by inserting Trojans into two designs | a digital post-processing derived from Intel's cryptographically secure RNG design used in the Ivy Bridge processors and a side-channel resistant SBox implementation | and by exploring their detectability and their e_ects on security.
By Georg T. Becker, Francesco Regazzoni, Christof Paarl, Wayne P. Burleson

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