SAN JOSE, Calif. Programmable logic vendor Actel Corp. has licensed technology from Cryptography Research Inc. (CRI) to enhance the security of its products against differential power analysis (DPA) and other side-channel related attacks, CRI said this week.
The agreement allows Actel (Mountain View, Calif.) to use DPA countermeasures to protect bitstream loading on Actel FPGAs, enabling Actes customers to protect their intellectual property and cryptographic keys from adversaries using power analysis and related attacks, according to CRI (San Francisco).
The license also provides an option for Actel customers to implement their own or licensed third-party DPA countermeasures on certain Actel products without requiring the customer to obtain a separate license from CRI, the company said.
"As more fielded systems involve sensitive cryptographic keys and intellectual property, protection from power analysis attacks becomes critically important for FPGA users concerned about security," said Richard Newell, senior principal product architect at Actel, in a statement.
DPA is a form of attack that involves monitoring variations in the electrical power consumption of a target device, then using advanced statistical methods to determine cryptographic keys.
Earlier this year, Benjamin Jun, vice president of technology at CRI, told Programmable Logic Design Line that the company is trying to educate FPGA users about the potential dangers of DPA attacks.
Actel plans to bolster existing and future FPGA families, including the Igloo, ProASIC 3, SmartFusion and Fusion families, with DPA countermeasure licensed offerings, according to the company.