Reverse Engineering of Chips

Electronics Mail

Author: Nakul Rao I

 

We have all studied VLSI, or atleast we will. So we know how chips are made, how integrated circuits are constructed. But now there is a new fast emerging field; that of reverse engineering integrated chips. Basically it’s the same as opening up your old toys to find out what exactly is inside it, how does it work, how does it compare to others. The same idea is applied to chips, but the entire process is much more complicated.

The first question that may pop into your mind is why anyone would do it. There are several answers to that question.

The most important reason is cryptography. A lot of hardware around you is responsible for the safe keeping of information. Mobile phones, smart cards, RFID tags, digital set top box and even your car keys have some aspect of cryptography involved in them at…

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