Researchers have developed smart heat control to identify thermal patterns generated during the operation of processors, according to a study conducted on February 28, 2018.
Technological development in the field of electronics has increased opportunities in automation and industrial production. However, this progress has its own disadvantages. As processors with dimension less than 10nm are highly sensitive, it can be easily destroyed by hackers. Such attacks can be defended by using the new approach discovered by researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). A particular thermal fingerprint is produced by every chip. Operations such as calculations, storing something in the main memory or retrieving something from hard disk causes heating and cooling at different areas of the processor.
The thermal patterns were analyzed by the researchers using infrared cameras that are sensitive and alterations were made in the control routine. The infrared cameras were used to show the feasibility of monitoring thermal patterns. In future, sensors integrated on the chip will function similar to these infrared cameras. At present, the temperature sensors available on the chips are used for protecting the particular device from overheating.
Jörg Henkel, professor said, “We will increase the number of sensors and use them for cyber security purposes for the first time.” Also, they want the chips to be equipped with neural networks for identification of thermal deviations. According to the researchers, their smart heat control will be first used in industrial facilities.
Hussam Amrouch, computer scientist said, “As soon as the hackers will know that we monitor temperature, they will adapt. They will write smaller or slower programs, whose heating profiles will be more difficult to identify.” Therefore, neural networks will be given proper training to identify threats that are modified.