A new study from Rice University has developed a new technology to produce digital fingerprints much more reliable than before.
The new tech could be 10 times more reliable in producing unclonable digital fingerprints digital devices. It is very important for the Internet of Things (IoT).
Generally, IoT is to connect physical objects to the internet in order to integrate the physical and cyber worlds.
Previously, scientists have found that the physically unclonable function (PUF) technology can produce unique security keys used for IoT devices.
In the present study, the researchers’ PUF tech could generate two unique fingerprints for each PUF.
The “zero-overhead” method uses the same PUF components to make both keys. It does not require extra area and latency.
It has an innovative design feature that allows the tech to be about 15 times more energy efficient.
According to the team, each PUF unit can work in two modes. In the first mode, it creates one fingerprint, and in the second mode, it gives a second fingerprint.
The dual keys are much better for reliability. When a device fails in the first mode, it can use the second key.
PUF fingerprints have several advantages, including uniqueness and unclonable.
This means no people can have the same fingerprint, and there is no way to create a new person who has the same fingerprint as someone else.
The PUF-derived encryption keys are also unique, bonded, and unclonable.
The team suggests their PUF is unique in terms of reliability, energy efficiency, and the amount of area it would take to implement on a chip.
It could greatly improve the IoT device security.
The study lead author is Kaiyuan Yang, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at Rice University.
The research is presented their work at the 2019 International Solid-State Circuits Conference.
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