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Title: Reconfigurable architectures for cryptographic systems
Author: Le Masle, Adrien
ISNI:       0000 0004 2735 4124
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2013
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Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) are suitable platforms for implementing cryptographic algorithms in hardware due to their flexibility, good performance and low power consumption. Computer security is becoming increasingly important and security requirements such as key sizes are quickly evolving. This creates the need for customisable hardware designs for cryptographic operations capable of covering a large design space. In this thesis we explore the four design dimensions relevant to cryptography - speed, area, power consumption and security of the crypto-system - by developing parametric designs for public-key generation and encryption as well as side-channel attack countermeasures. There are four contributions. First, we present new architectures for Montgomery multiplication and exponentiation based on variable pipelining and variable serial replication. Our implementations of these architectures are compared to the best implementations in the literature and the design space is explored in terms of speed and area trade-offs. Second, we generalise our Montgomery multiplier design ideas by developing a parametric model to allow rapid optimisation of a general class of algorithms containing loops with dependencies carried from one iteration to the next. By predicting the throughput and the area of the design, our model facilitates and speeds up design space exploration. Third, we develop new architectures for primality testing including the first hardware architecture for the NIST approved Lucas primality test. We explore the area, speed and power consumption trade-offs by comparing our Lucas architectures on CPU, FPGA and ASIC. Finally, we tackle the security issue by presenting two novel power attack countermeasures based on on-chip power monitoring. Our constant power framework uses a closed-loop control system to keep the power consumption of any FPGA implementation constant. Our attack detection framework uses a network of ring-oscillators to detect the insertion of a shunt resistor-based power measurement circuit on a device's power rail. This countermeasure is lightweight and has a relatively low power overhead compared to existing masking and hiding countermeasures.
Supervisor: Luk, Wayne ; Cadar, Cristian Sponsor: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council ; BlueRISC
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral