Visible to the public "DARPA Hacks Its Secure Hardware, Fends Off Most Attacks"Conflict Detection Enabled

The Defense Advanced Research Agency (DARPA) recently announced the results of its first bug bounty program called Findings Exploits to Thwart Tampering (FETT). The FETT bug bounty was run in partnership with the Department of Defense's Defense Digital Service (DDS) and trusted crowdsourced security company, Synack. FETT aimed to prove the value of hardware security architectures developed under DARPA's "System Security Integration Through Hardware and Firmware" (SSITH) program and point out critical areas of improvement. After 13,000 hours of hacking exploits performed by more than 580 cybersecurity researchers, only ten vulnerabilities were disclosed. Keith Rebello, the DARPA program manager leading SSITH and FETT, described the common types of vulnerabilities as buffer errors, privilege escalations, information leakage attacks, resource management attacks, numeric errors, cryptographic attacks, and code injection attacks. Out of the ten vulnerabilities, seven were rated "critical," based on the Common Vulnerability Scoring System 3.0 standards. Most of the critical vulnerabilities come from weaknesses introduced by interactions between hardware, firmware, and the operating system software, which calls for more exploration of hardware/software co-design and verification methods. The SSITH program is now in the third and final phase of developing security architectures and tools that protect systems from common means of exploitation. During this phase, researchers will improve the performance of their technologies and create a silicon system-on-chip that executes the security improvements. This article continues to discuss findings from DARPA's FETT bug bounty program and the current phase of the SSITH program.

IEEE Spectrum reports "DARPA Hacks Its Secure Hardware, Fends Off Most Attacks"