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Picek, Stjepan, Mariot, Luca, Yang, Bohan, Jakobovic, Domagoj, Mentens, Nele.  2017.  Design of S-Boxes Defined with Cellular Automata Rules. Proceedings of the Computing Frontiers Conference. :409–414.

The aim of this paper is to find cellular automata (CA) rules that are used to describe S-boxes with good cryptographic properties and low implementation cost. Up to now, CA rules have been used in several ciphers to define an S-box, but in all those ciphers, the same CA rule is used. This CA rule is best known as the one defining the Keccak $\chi$ transformation. Since there exists no straightforward method for constructing CA rules that define S-boxes with good cryptographic/implementation properties, we use a special kind of heuristics for that – Genetic Programming (GP). Although it is not possible to theoretically prove the efficiency of such a method, our experimental results show that GP is able to find a large number of CA rules that define good S-boxes in a relatively easy way. We focus on the 4 x 4 and 5 x 5 sizes and we implement the S-boxes in hardware to examine implementation properties like latency, area, and power. Particularly interesting is the internal encoding of the solutions in the considered heuristics using combinatorial circuits; this makes it easy to approximate S-box implementation properties like latency and area a priori.

Winderickx, Jori, Braeken, An, Singelée, Dave, Peeters, Roel, Vandenryt, Thijs, Thoelen, Ronald, Mentens, Nele.  2018.  Digital Signatures and Signcryption Schemes on Embedded Devices: A Trade-off Between Computation and Storage. Proceedings of the 15th ACM International Conference on Computing Frontiers. :342–347.
This paper targets the efficient implementation of digital signatures and signcryption schemes on typical internet-of-things (IoT) devices, i.e. embedded processors with constrained computation power and storage. Both signcryption schemes (providing digital signatures and encryption simultaneously) and digital signatures rely on computation-intensive public-key cryptography. When the number of signatures or encrypted messages the device needs to generate after deployment is limited, a trade-off can be made between performing the entire computation on the embedded device or moving part of the computation to a precomputation phase. The latter results in the storage of the precomputed values in the memory of the processor. We examine this trade-off on a health sensor platform and we additionally apply storage encryption, resulting in five implementation variants of the considered schemes.
Vliegen, Jo, Rabbani, Md Masoom, Conti, Mauro, Mentens, Nele.  2019.  SACHa: Self-Attestation of Configurable Hardware. 2019 Design, Automation Test in Europe Conference Exhibition (DATE). :746–751.
Device attestation is a procedure to verify whether an embedded device is running the intended application code. This way, protection against both physical attacks and remote attacks on the embedded software is aimed for. With the wide adoption of Field-Programmable Gate Arrays or FPGAs, hardware also became configurable, and hence susceptible to attacks (just like software). In addition, an upcoming trend for hardware-based attestation is the use of configurable FPGA hardware. Therefore, in order to attest a whole system that makes use of FPGAs, the status of both the software and the hardware needs to be verified, without the availability of a tamper-resistant hardware module.In this paper, we propose a solution in which a prover core on the FPGA performs an attestation of the entire FPGA, including a self-attestation. This way, the FPGA can be used as a tamper-resistant hardware module to perform hardware-based attestation of a processor, resulting in a protection of the entire hardware/software system against malicious code updates.