IEEE S&P: Two Distinguished Paper Awards for MPI-SP Researchers

MPI-SP successful at flagship conference for security research

May 25, 2023

A group of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Security and Privacy (MPI-SP) in Bochum in collaboration with researchers from other institutions won two Distinguished Paper Awards at the 44th annual IEEE Symposium for Security and Privacy in San Francisco.

Protection against Spectre attacks

The "Spectre" class of vulnerabilities in many modern microprocessors came as a large shock in 2018. Since then, various proposals for countermeasures have been put forward, but they typically come at a steep performance impact. “Our research proposes a technique that allows us to protect common cryptographic software against Spectre v1 at almost no cost,” says Basavesh Ammanaghatta Shivakumar, who was part of the team of MPI-SP researchers that was awarded for their paper “Typing High-Speed Cryptography against Spectre v1”.

Detecting manipulations in microchips

Security gaps exist not only in software, but also directly in hardware. Attackers might deliberately have them built in in order to attack technical applications on a large scale. Researchers at MPI-SP are exploring methods of detecting such so-called hardware Trojans. They compared construction plans for chips with electron microscope images of real chips and had an algorithm search for differences. “This is how we detected deviations in 37 out of 40 cases,” explains Steffen Becker. He and his colleagues were awarded for their paper “Red Team vs. Blue Team: A Real-World Hardware Trojan Detection Case Study Across Four Modern CMOS Technology Generations”. Subsequent to their study, the researchers released all images of the chips, the design data as well as the analysis algorithms online for free so that other research groups can use the data to conduct further studies.

The list of all papers awarded at the 44th IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy can be found here.

About IEEE S&P

IEEE (pronounced “Eye-triple-E”) stands for the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and is the world’s largest technical professional organization. Part of its work is the sponsoring of annual conferences and other event formats, thereby providing forums for cutting-edge content for all of the technical fields of interest within the organization. One of these conferences is the IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy which has been the premier forum for presenting developments in computer security and electronic privacy since 1980.

Go to Editor View