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‫ Mobile chips face lockdown to prevent hacks

Number: IRCNE2014082287
Date: 2014-08-11

According to “techworld”, chip makers want to make hardware the first layer of defense against data breaches and other attacks on tablets and smartphones.

Mobile devices are becoming increasingly vulnerable, with more personal information, banking data, passwords and contacts residing on devices without any protection, said presenters at the Hot Chips conference in Cupertino, California, on Sunday.

The NSA revelations and a mounting pile of data breaches have reminded hardware makers that well-designed chips for PCs, servers and mobile devices, can minimize, if not prevent, attacks, said Leendert VanDoom, corporate fellow at Advanced Micro Devices.

Most attacks today exploit software bugs, but it's possible for hackers to isolate keyboards, voice, sensors and even screens, snoop for information and send data back to rogue servers, said Vikas Chandra, principal engineer at ARM's research and development division.

A well-designed system can provide multiple layers to prevent malicious attacks and injection of rogue code, said Chandra, adding that the hardware, security subsystem and software on mobile hardware need to work together.

Besides ARM, chip makers like Intel and AMD are working to bring more security features so mobile devices are shielded from attacks.

Most mobile device users are not tech savvy, and haven't secured devices with passwords or pins. Few devices have security software to prevent malware, and trojans running on social networking apps could collect personal information and send it back to rogue servers, Chandra said.

ARM is improving its security layer called TrustZone to prevent such attacks, Chandra said. The layer establishes a trusted execution environment in which code can be safely executed without affecting the entire system.

It's also important to make sure servers are ready to deal with different security layers in mobile devices and the new authentication techniques, said Ruby Lee, professor of electrical engineering at Princeton University.

ARM's TrustZone has put the stake in the ground for mobile platform integrity, including how to set up wireless transmissions, authentication techniques and others, Lee said.

A lot of hardware security implementations are around secure execution layers, trusted domains and securing DRAM so private keys and cryptographic data can't be stolen in transit. Intel is bringing the ability to identify rootkits and polymorphic viruses at the hardware layer to its upcoming chips so malicious attacks can be identified before they wreak havoc on a system.

System design is important, and the security features need to be chosen wisely.



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تاریخ ایجاد: 29 شهریور 1393

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