Physical(ly) unclonable functions: dreams and reality

27.08.2015, 15:00 – 16:30

2015/08/27 15:00-16:30

Speaker: Ingrid Verbauwhede | Location: Mornewegstraße 32 (S4|14), Room 3.1.01, Darmstadt

Organizer: Giorgia Azzurra Marson / Nina Bindel


Physically unclonable functions (PUFs) have been researched for a while. They are promised as a cheap, hardware-entangled, security anchor inside a silicon device, providing intrinsic security properties without extra processing steps. With the correct post-processing, they can be used for authentication as well as key generation.

In this presentation, we list the facts and the dreams regarding PUFs. We discuss essential properties of PUFs and PUF protocols. We list open problems and further research directions and try to figure out if we are reaching the dream. At COSIC, research on PUFs has been performed in the context of the European projects UNIQUE, PUFFIN, HINT and currently HECTOR.

Short Bio

Dr. Ingrid Verbauwhede is a Professor in the research group COSIC of the Electrical Engineering Department of the KU Leuven in Belgium. At COSIC, she leads the embedded systems and hardware group. She is also adjunct professor at the EE department at UCLA, Los Angeles, CA. She joined COSIC in 2003 and UCLA in 1998. Before joining UCLA she worked at UC Berkeley as a post-doctoral researcher and visiting lecturer, and later at TCSI and Atmel Lab in Berkeley, CA. She is a Member of IACR and a fellow of IEEE. She was elected as member of the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Science and the Arts in 2011.

She is a pioneer in the field of efficient and secure implementations of cryptographic algorithms in embedded context on ASIC, FPGA and embedded SW. It has been the main focus of her PhD and of her research at UCLA and KU Leuven. At COSIC she also supervises a hardware electronics lab to perform side-channel and fault-attacks. She is the author and co-author of more than 300 publications at conferences, journals, book chapters and books. She graduated 27 PhD students between 2004 and 2015, which all have top positions in academia and in industry, all over the world.

Dr. Verbauwhede has been the general chair in 2012 and the program chair in 2007 of the IACR CHES (Cryptographic Hardware and Embedded Systems) workshop, which is the flagship venue for secure hardware design. She has been member of the program committee of a large number of conferences, including DAC, DATE, ISSCC, Usenix, SIPS, ISCAS, ISLPED, and more. Prof. Verbauwhede has participated in several EU funded hardware and embedded systems security projects. Currently her research group participates in the FP7 project HINT and the H2020 project HECTOR. Her list of publications and patents is available at