LO-FAT: Low-Overhead Control Flow ATtestation in Hardware

Ghada Dessouky, Shaza Zeitouni, Thomas Nyman, Andrew Paverd, Lucas Davi, Patrick Koeberl, N. Asokan, Ahmad-Reza Sadeghi

Attacks targeting software on embedded systems are becoming increasingly prevalent. Remote attestation is a mechanism that allows establishing trust in embedded devices. However, existing attestation schemes are either static and cannot detect control-flow attacks, or require instrumentation of software incurring high performance overheads. To overcome these limitations, we present LO-FAT, the first practical hardware-based approach to control-flow attestation. By leveraging existing processor hardware features and commonly-used IP blocks, our approach enables efficient control-flow attestation without requiring software instrumentation. We show that our proof-of-concept implementation based on a RISC-V SoC incurs no processor stalls and requires reasonable area overhead.

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