Architectures of flexible symmetric key crypto engines—a survey

Lilian Bossuet, Michael Grand, Lubos Gaspar, Viktor Fischer, Guy Gogniat
2013 ACM Computing Surveys  
Throughput, flexibility, and security form the design trilogy of reconfigurable crypto engines; they must be carefully considered without reducing the major role of classical design constraints, such as surface, power consumption, dependability, and cost. Applications such as network security, Virtual Private Networks (VPN), Digital Rights Management (DRM), and pay per view have drawn attention to these three constraints. For more than ten years, many studies in the field of cryptographic
more » ... ering have focused on the design of optimized high-throughput hardware cryptographic cores (e.g., symmetric and asymmetric key block ciphers, stream ciphers, and hash functions). The flexibility of cryptographic systems plays a very important role in their practical application. Reconfigurable hardware systems can evolve with algorithms, face up to new types of attacks, and guarantee interoperability between countries and institutions. The flexibility of reconfigurable crypto processors and crypto coprocessors has reached new levels with the emergence of dynamically reconfigurable hardware architectures and tools. Last but not least, the security of systems that handle confidential information needs to be thoroughly evaluated at the design stage in order to meet security objectives that depend on the importance of the information to be protected and on the cost of protection. Usually, designers tackle security problems at the same time as other design constraints and in many cases target only one security objective, for example, a side-channel attack countermeasures, fault tolerance capability, or the monitoring of the device environment. Only a few authors have addressed all three design constraints at the same time. In particular, key management security (e.g., secure key generation and transmission, the use of a hierarchical key structure composed of session keys and master keys) has frequently been neglected to the benefit of performance and/or flexibility. Nevertheless, a few authors propose original processor architectures based on multi-crypto-processor structures and reconfigurable cryptographic arrays. In this article, we review published works on symmetric key crypto engines and present current trends and design challenges.
doi:10.1145/2501654.2501655 fatcat:h5pccigb35hfvinkrpn7s75gl4