The Hardware Hacking Handbook: Breaking Embedded Security with Hardware Attacks (Paperback)

The Hardware Hacking Handbook: Breaking Embedded Security with Hardware Attacks By Jasper van Woudenberg, Colin O'Flynn Cover Image


The Hardware Hacking Handbook takes you deep inside embedded devices to show how different kinds of attacks work, then guides you through each hack on real hardware.

Embedded devices are chip-size microcomputers small enough to be included in the structure of the object they control, and they’re everywhere—in phones, cars, credit cards, laptops, medical equipment, even critical infrastructure. This means understanding their security is critical. The Hardware Hacking Handbook takes you deep inside different types of embedded systems, revealing the designs, components, security limits, and reverse-engineering challenges you need to know for executing effective hardware attacks.

Written with wit and infused with hands-on lab experiments, this handbook puts you in the role of an attacker interested in breaking security to do good. Starting with a crash course on the architecture of embedded devices, threat modeling, and attack trees, you’ll go on to explore hardware interfaces, ports and communication protocols, electrical signaling, tips for analyzing firmware images, and more. Along the way, you’ll use a home testing lab to perform fault-injection, side-channel (SCA), and simple and differential power analysis (SPA/DPA) attacks on a variety of real devices, such as a crypto wallet. The authors also share insights into real-life attacks on embedded systems, including Sony’s PlayStation 3, the Xbox 360, and Philips Hue lights, and provide an appendix of the equipment needed for your hardware hacking lab – like a multimeter and an oscilloscope – with options for every type of budget.
You’ll learn:
  • How to model security threats, using attacker profiles, assets, objectives, and countermeasures
  • Electrical basics that will help you understand communication interfaces, signaling, and measurement 
  • How to identify injection points for executing clock, voltage, electromagnetic, laser, and body-biasing fault attacks, as well as practical injection tips 
  • How to use timing and power analysis attacks to extract passwords and cryptographic keys
  • Techniques for leveling up both simple and differential power analysis, from practical measurement tips to filtering, processing, and visualization

  • Whether you’re an industry engineer tasked with understanding these attacks, a student starting out in the field, or an electronics hobbyist curious about replicating existing work, The Hardware Hacking Handbook is an indispensable resource – one you’ll always want to have onhand.

    About the Author

    Colin O'Flynn runs NewAE Technology Inc., a startup designing tools and equipment to teach engineers about embedded security. He started the open-source ChipWhisperer project as part of his PhD, and was previously an assistant professor with Dalhousie University teaching embedded systems and security. He lives in Halifax, Canada, and you can find his dogs featured in many of the products developed with NewAE.
    Jasper van Woudenberg is the CTO of Riscure North America. He has been involved in embedded device security on a broad range of topics, including finding and helping fix bugs in code that runs on hundreds of millions of devices, using symbolic execution to extract keys from faulted cryptosystems, and using speech recognition algorithms for side channel trace processing. Jasper is a father of two and husband of one and lives in California, where he likes to bike mountains and board snow. He has a cat that tolerates him but is too cool for Twitter.

    Praise For…

    "I really wished such a book existed when I started with researching hardware hacking a few years ago. It introduces all the relevant background that’s needed for hardware hacking along with references to further reading (the references are really nice to have for more intermediate readers). It also provides many practical examples that helps you see why the concepts are important and how they are applied."
    —Yifan Lu, Security Researcher

    "One of the most complete introductions to hardware hacking I’ve seen . . . provide[s] you something you wouldn't learn elsewhere."
    —Arya Voronova, Hackaday

    Product Details
    ISBN: 9781593278748
    ISBN-10: 1593278748
    Publisher: No Starch Press
    Publication Date: December 21st, 2021
    Pages: 512
    Language: English