FICS Research Students Develop Experimental PCBs for Cybersecurity Research Training

Graduate students at FICS Research have developed a series of experimental printed-circuit boards (PCBs), unique to the University of Florida, that are being used to train the university’s first cohort of hardware-oriented cybersecurity experts. Designed in conjunction with FICS Research professors who teach hardware security courses and based on the practical theorem acquired from those course, the experimental boards currently have the capacity to support about a dozen different experiments that recreate different types of hardware security attacks and the countermeasures used in their defense. Thus, through organized experiments on the board, students taking courses such as Intro to Hardware Security and Trust and its accompanying Hardware Security Lab will have an opportunity to not only apply the theory that they have learned, but also get hands-on experience implementing, combating and/or mitigating attacks such as side-channel, fault-injection, bus snooping, reverse engineering, hardware Trojans, and physical unclonable functions (PUFs).

Playfully dubbed HAHA Boards, short for HArdware HAcking, the experimental development boards will be available to all students taking courses being developed for FICS Research’s new Hardware Security Certificate, starting this Spring 2017.  Composed of three courses – Intro to Hardware Security and Trust (EEL 5934), Hardware Security Lab (EEL 6935), Cross-Layered Systems Security (EEL 5934) and/or Advanced Topics in Hardware Security and Trust (EEL 6935) – the certificate will officially be made available to graduate students in the University’s Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department starting next year. A Hardware Security Track, for undergraduate students, as well as an Information Security Certificate are also currently being developed by FICS Research faculty for Fall 2017.

In addition, some of the courses for the Hardware Security Certificate are also currently being made available to professionals and non-degree seekers on-line, via the UF Edge Program and the Engineering Office of Professional Development.  For a full listing of the 2017 EDGE course schedule, please click HERE.