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Journal of Hardware and Systems Security



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Network-on-chip facilitates glueless interconnection of various on-chip components in the forthcoming system-on-chips. As in the case of any new technology, security is a major concern in network-on-chip (NoC) design too. In this work, we explore a covert threat model for multiprocessor system-on-chips (MPSoCs) stemming from the use of malicious third-party network-on-chips (NoCs). We illustrate that a rogue NoC (rNoC) can selectively disrupt the perceived availability of on-chip resources, thereby causing large performance bottlenecks for the applications running on the MPSoC platform. Further, to counter the threat posed by rNoC, we propose a runtime latency auditor that enables an MPSoC integrator to monitor the trustworthiness of the deployed NoC throughout the chip lifetime. We also discuss measures that can be taken to minimize the impact of a rNoC, once it is detected. Our comprehensive cross-layer analysis of our novel detection technique indicates modest overheads of 12.73% in area, 9.844% in power, and 5.4% in terms of network latency.


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