Symmetric Discharge Logic against Differential Power Analysis

Jong Suk LEE  Jae Woon LEE  Young Hwan KIM  

Publication
IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Fundamentals of Electronics, Communications and Computer Sciences   Vol.E90-A   No.1   pp.234-240
Publication Date: 2007/01/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1337
DOI: 10.1093/ietfec/e90-a.1.234
Print ISSN: 0916-8508
Type of Manuscript: Special Section LETTER (Special Section on Cryptography and Information Security)
Category: 
Keyword: 
symmetric discharge logic,  SDL,  smart card,  differential power analysis,  DPA,  

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Summary: 
Differential power analysis (DPA) is an effective technique that extracts secret keys from cryptographic systems through statistical analysis of the power traces obtained during encryption and decryption operations. This letter proposes symmetric discharge logic (SDL), a circuit-level countermeasure against DPA, which exhibits uniform power traces for every clock period by maintaining a set of discharge paths independent of input values. This feature minimizes differences in power traces and improves resistance to DPA attacks. HSPICE simulations for the test circuits using 0.18 µm TSMC CMOS process parameters indicate that SDL reduces power differences by an order of magnitude, compared to the existing circuit-level technique.