Protection of Altera Cyclone V FPGAs Against Potential Attacks

New Security Key Programming Software Option Protects the FPGA Design Against Re-engineering, Cloning and Copying

The new Security Key Programming software option allows programming of a 256-bit AES key for Altera Cyclone V FPGAs. This activates the design security in the FPGA, thus bitstreams can no longer be analyzed. This protects the FPGA design against re-engineering, cloning and copying.

The "Security Key Programming" option enables programming of the 256-bit AES key via JTAG access. In conjunction with a Cipher Block Chaining (CBC) implementation, the highest possible security in the authentication and encryption of the FPGA configuration data is ensured. The programming method provides the reliability required to accurately program One Time Programmable (OTP) fuses, configured by Altera software. This is essential because the arming of the security mechanism is an irreversible process. After arming, only properly encoded bitstreams are accepted by the FPGA.

The "Security Key Programming" option is part of the software platform SYSTEM CASCON.

On the hardware side, this functionality is realized through the use of the Embedded JTAG Solutions platform SCANFLEX. This system offers many possibilities in support of a wide range of applications. These include options for operating the JTAG interface over long distances of up to 4 meters, gang operations or control of multi-TAP / multi-drop targets.

Since both hardware and software support all Embedded System Access (ESA) technologies, they can be combined with other methods such as Boundary Scan Test or Processor Emulation Test.

Altera Cyclone V FPGA

More Security for Altera FPGAs

Created by Matthias Müller | | Embedded JTAG Solutions Cyclone

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