ECE Seminar with Ryan Kastner

10:00 am on Thursday, April 11, 2013
Photonics Center, 8 Saint Mary’s St., Room 339
Bit-Tight Design: A Clean-Slate Approach to Hardware-Assisted Security and Resiliency

With Professor Ryan Kastner
Department of Computer Science and Engineering
University of California, San Diego

Faculty Host: Ayse Coskun

Refreshments will be served outside Room 339 at 9:45 a.m.

Abstract: Hardware/software interfaces are riddled with holes (timing-channels, undefined instruction behaviors, storage-channels, memory access backdoors) through which secrets leak and attackers exploit. System designers are constantly forced to respond to these attacks, often only after significant damage has been inflicted. We propose a new hardware foundation for secure computing which will carefully and precisely manage all flows of information, making them explicit and verifiable from the hardware logic gates all the way up the system stack. This can be used to ensure private keys are never leaked (for secrecy) and that untrusted information will not be used in the making of critical decisions (for safety and fault tolerance) nor in determining the schedule (real-time).

About the Speaker: Ryan is currently a professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of California, San Diego. He received a PhD in computer science at UCLA, a master’s degree (MS) in engineering, and bachelor’s degrees (BS) in both electrical engineering and computer engineering, all from Northwestern University. He is the co-director of the Wireless Embedded Systems Master of Advanced Studies Program. He also co-directs the Engineers for Exploration Program. His current research interests reside in the realm of embedded system design, in particular, the use of reconfigurable computing devices for digital signal processing.