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CHASE-Logo Center for Hardware Assurance, Security and Engineering UCONN
CHASE Newsletter

A Message From CHASE Director:
CHASE center has come a long way since its inception in June 18, 2012. We have added two new faculty in the domain of hardware security. Prof. Domenic Forte comes the University of Maryland where he received his PhD in the summer of 2013 and Prof. Marten van Dijk comes from MIT where he spent almost the past decade as a visiting researcher working on all aspects of security. In addition, we are in process of adding new equipment to the center. Probe station, THZ technology, special cameras for 3D imaging, low-power visual inspection devices, and X-ray machines are the equipment the center is bringing in. These equipment are pat of the UCONN Tech park funding provided by the State of Connecticut. Currently, CHASE consortia project selection is underway and through an internal competition six new projects will be funded by the CHASE members and will be announced by Oct. 5, 2013. CHASE's support comes from Honeywell, Comcast, MDA, DOD, ARO, Synokey, and many other companies and agencies. There are more exciting news and initiatives about CHASE that we will share with you as they further develop.

Best regards,

Mohammad (Mark) Tehranipoor, PhD
F.L. Castleman Associate Professor in Engineering Innovation
University of Connecticut, ECE Department


CHASE Welcomes New Faculty!

The CHASE Center welcomes Associate Professor Marten van Dijk and Assistant Professor Domenic Forte to kick off the Fall 2013 semester.

Dr. Marten van Dijk joins the CHASE Center bringing over ten years research experience in system security both in academia (MIT CSAIL) and industry (Philips Research and RSA Laboratories). He has been part of the team that first introduced circuit realizations of Physical Unclonable Functions (PUFs). Dr. van Dijk has been working on processor architectures that offer strong security guarantees; most notably, the design of Aegis, the first single-chip secure processor that verifies integrity and freshness of external memory and in current research, Ascend, an architecture for secure computation on encrypted data. Read more

Dr. Domenic Forte received his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at the University of Maryland. He joins the CHASE Center with research contributions towards realizing more efficient, reliable and secure computing systems through better design and run-time support. From 2007-2009, Dr. Forte performed research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Center of Information Technology.He is the recipient of the prestigious “George Corcoran Outstanding Teaching Award” by the ECE department at the University of Maryland. Dr. Read More

New Publications

Generalized External Interaction with Tamper-Resistant Hardware with Bounded Information Leakage, the ACM Conference on Cloud Computing Security Workshop (CCSW) 2013. 

This paper investigates secure ways to interact with tamper-resistant hardware leaking a strictly bounded amount of information. Architectural support for the interaction mechanisms is studied and performance implications are evaluated. The interaction mechanisms are built on top of a recently-proposed secure processor Ascend. Ascend is chosen because unlike other tamper-resistant hardware systems, Ascend completely obfuscates pin traffic through the use of Oblivious RAM (ORAM) and periodic ORAM accesses. However, the original Ascend proposal, with the exception of main memory, can only communicate with the outside world at the beginning or end of program execution; no intermediate information transfer is allowed. Our system, Stream-Ascend, is an extension of Ascend that enables intermediate interaction with the outside world. Stream-Ascend significantly improves the generality and efficiency of Ascend in supporting many applications that fit into a streaming model, while maintaining the same security level. Simulation results show that with smart scheduling algorithms, the performance overhead of Stream-Ascend relative to an insecure and idealized baseline processor is only 24.5%, 0.7%, and 3.9% for a set of streaming benchmarks in a large dataset processing application. Stream-Ascend is able to achieve a very high security level with small overheads for a large class of applications.

Authors: X. Yu, C.W. Fletcher, L. Ren, Marten van Dijk
(University of Connecticut), and S. Devadas (MIT CSAIL, Cambridge)

Temperature Tracking: An Innovative Run-Time Approach for Hardware Trojan Detection, 2013 International Conference on Computer-Aided Design (ICCAD)

Abstract: The hardware Trojan threat has motivated development of Trojan detection schemes at all stages of the integrated circuit (IC) lifecycle. While the majority of existing schemes focus on ICs at test-time, there are many unique advantages offered by post-deployment/run-time Trojan detection. However, run-time approaches have been underutilized with prior work highlighting the challenges of implementing them with limited hardware resources. In this paper, we propose innovative low-overhead approaches for run-time Trojan detection which exploit the thermal sensors already available in many modern systems to detect deviations in power/thermal profiles caused by Trojan activation. Simulation results using state-of-the-art tools on publicly available Trojan benchmarks verify that our approaches can detect active Trojans quickly and with few false positives.

 Authors: Domenic Forte (University of Connecticut), Chongxi Bao (University of Maryland), and Ankur Srivastava (University of Maryland)


CHASE is a research consortium with member companies from across the nation committed to enabling knowledge breakthroughs that shape future electronic systems. The center provides membership opportunity at three different levels (Platinum, Gold, and Silver). Depending on the level of the membership, a different set of benefits will be made available to the members.

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