A Physically Unclonable Function (PUF) is a security mechanism that uses the inherent physical variations of a device to generate a unique, unclonable output. This output can be used as a cryptographic key or a device identifier. PUFs rely on the fact that the exact physical properties of a device, such as the physical and electrical characteristics on a chip, can never be replicated exactly. This makes PUFs a highly secure method for protecting sensitive information and ensuring device authenticity. PUFs are often used in a wide range of applications, including secure boot, secure storage, and secure key generation. This PQC ready PUF IP Core is compliant with ISO/IEC 20897where Secure-IC has been the lead party for PUF quality test standard, thus making it the easiest technology to use on the market and the most reliable (with no need to make a testchip before). In addition it can be used in any technology node and foundry.
PUF IP Core is a secret key generation system based on Physically Unclonable Functions (PUF). The secret key is extracted by the PUF from the silicon by using its inherent properties: technological dispersions are amplified into digital signals (bits of information). The key generated by the PUF is not readable but extracted using a group of helper-data. This distinctive feature allows a real protection against the reverse-engineering techniques compared to traditional methods that store the key in non-volatile memory.
PUF IP core ensures the following properties:
• Tamper resistance
• Mathematical Unclonability
• Physical unclonability
• Entropy = 128.0 bit for a typical AES-128 key
• Reliability = fixed to the desired value, e.g., 1 FIT for ASIL D
• Entropy & reliability ensured in all specified corners (owing to adaptive control, a unique feature of our PUF)
The PUF IP ensures credential generation based on process variations properties which are unique from chip to chip, impossible to reproduce or emulate, hence alleviating the problem of external key management system and can be used for several use-cases, detailed hereafter:
• Generation of a unique identity for a semiconductor device
• Anti-tamper key protection against cloning or reverse engineering
• Chip sample authentication using a challenge response protocol
• Firmware authentication (integrity + genuine origin) using the generated key
• Firmware encryption (unique per device, which pairs a code with a device, thereby denying attack-one-break-all attacks) using the generated key