Friday, May 26 at 11am in AK 218:
Amplifying Side Channels Through Performance Degradation
Presenter: Yuval Yarom (University of Adelaide and DATA61, CSIRO)
Interference between processes executing on shared hardware can be used
to mount performance degradation attacks. However, in most cases, such
attacks offer little benefit for the adversary. In this talk, I will
show how an adversary can use software-based performance-degradation
attacks to amplify side-channel leaks and thereby to increase both the
amount and the quality of information captured. I will describe a new
information leak source in the OpenSSL implementation of the ECDSA
digital signature algorithm, albeit seemingly unexploitable due to the
limited granularity of previous trace procurement techniques. I will
then show how an adversary can use the performance-degradation attack to
slow the victim down sufficiently and to exploit this new information
leak. Using the combined attack, an adversary can break a private key of
the secp256k1 curve, used in the Bitcoin protocol, after observing only
6 signatures—a four-fold improvement over all previously described attacks.
This work is a collaboration with Thomas Allan, Billy Bob Brumley,
Katrina Falkner and Joop van de Pol.
Applied Cryptology Seminar
The seminar features presentations of hot topics within the
interdisciplinary field of cyber-security.
All are welcome!
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