Visible to the public Biblio

Filters: Keyword is thermal  [Clear All Filters]
Guri, Mordechai.  2019.  HOTSPOT: Crossing the Air-Gap Between Isolated PCs and Nearby Smartphones Using Temperature. 2019 European Intelligence and Security Informatics Conference (EISIC). :94—100.
Air-gapped computers are hermetically isolated from the Internet to eliminate any means of information leakage. In this paper we present HOTSPOT - a new type of airgap crossing technique. Signals can be sent secretly from air-gapped computers to nearby smartphones and then on to the Internet - in the form of thermal pings. The thermal signals are generated by the CPUs and GPUs and intercepted by a nearby smartphone. We examine this covert channel and discuss other work in the field of air-gap covert communication channels. We present technical background and describe thermal sensing in modern smartphones. We implement a transmitter on the computer side and a receiver Android App on the smartphone side, and discuss the implementation details. We evaluate the covert channel and tested it in a typical work place. Our results show that it possible to send covert signals from air-gapped PCs to the attacker on the Internet through the thermal pings. We also propose countermeasures for this type of covert channel which has thus far been overlooked.
Paul-Pena, D., Krishnamurthy, P., Karri, R., Khorrami, F..  2017.  Process-aware side channel monitoring for embedded control system security. 2017 IFIP/IEEE International Conference on Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI-SoC). :1–6.

Cyber-physical systems (CPS) are interconnections of heterogeneous hardware and software components (e.g., sensors, actuators, physical systems/processes, computational nodes and controllers, and communication subsystems). Increasing network connectivity of CPS computational nodes facilitates maintenance and on-demand reprogrammability and reduces operator workload. However, such increasing connectivity also raises the potential for cyber-attacks that attempt unauthorized modifications of run-time parameters or control logic in the computational nodes to hamper process stability or performance. In this paper, we analyze the effectiveness of real-time monitoring using digital and analog side channels. While analog side channels might not typically provide sufficient granularity to observe each iteration of a periodic loop in the code in the CPS device, the temporal averaging inherent to side channel sensory modalities enables observation of persistent changes to the contents of a computational loop through their resulting effect on the level of activity of the device. Changes to code can be detected by observing readings from side channel sensors over a period of time. Experimental studies are performed on an ARM-based single board computer.

Bartolini, Davide B., Miedl, Philipp, Thiele, Lothar.  2016.  On the Capacity of Thermal Covert Channels in Multicores. Proceedings of the Eleventh European Conference on Computer Systems. :24:1–24:16.

Modern multicore processors feature easily accessible temperature sensors that provide useful information for dynamic thermal management. These sensors were recently shown to be a potential security threat, since otherwise isolated applications can exploit them to establish a thermal covert channel and leak restricted information. Previous research showed experiments that document the feasibility of (low-rate) communication over this channel, but did not further analyze its fundamental characteristics. For this reason, the important questions of quantifying the channel capacity and achievable rates remain unanswered. To address these questions, we devise and exploit a new methodology that leverages both theoretical results from information theory and experimental data to study these thermal covert channels on modern multicores. We use spectral techniques to analyze data from two representative platforms and estimate the capacity of the channels from a source application to temperature sensors on the same or different cores. We estimate the capacity to be in the order of 300 bits per second (bps) for the same-core channel, i.e., when reading the temperature on the same core where the source application runs, and in the order of 50 bps for the 1-hop channel, i.e., when reading the temperature of the core physically next to the one where the source application runs. Moreover, we show a communication scheme that achieves rates of more than 45 bps on the same-core channel and more than 5 bps on the 1-hop channel, with less than 1% error probability. The highest rate shown in previous work was 1.33 bps on the 1-hop channel with 11% error probability.