Ramesh Karri
Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Tandon School of Engineering,
Polytechnic Institute, New York University
Title: Towards High-Level Approaches to Hardware Cyber Security (Invited Talk)


Designers use third-party intellectual property (IP) cores and outsource various steps in the integrated circuit (IC) design and manufacturing flow. As a result, security vulnerabilities have been rising. This is forcing IC designers and end users to re-evaluate their trust in ICs. If an attacker gets hold of an unprotected IC, he can reverse engineer the IC and pirate the IP. Similarly, if an attacker gets hold of a design, she can insert malicious circuits and backdoors into the design.

In this talk, I will outline High-Level Design for Trust techniques that we developed to prevent such attacks: Locking/Obfuscation and Secure Sourcing of IPs for High-Level Integration. Locking/Obfuscation implements a built-in obfuscation mechanism in ICs to prevent reverse engineering. Secure sourcing can thwart Trojan insertion in 3rd party Intellectual Properties.

I will wrap up the presentation by pointing out why hardware security is an essential objective from economics, security, and safety aspects and offer my vision of the exciting field of hardware cybersecurity.


Ramesh Karri is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at New York University. He co-directs the NYU Center for Cyber Security http://cyber.nyu.edu). He is also leads the Cyber Security thrust of the NY State Center for Advanced Telecommunications Technologies at NYU. He co-founded the Trust-Hub (http://trust-hub.org) and organizes t the Embedded Systems Challenge (https://csaw.engineering.nyu.edu/esc), the annual red team blue team event.

Ramesh Karri has a Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering, from the University of California at San Diego and a B.E in ECE from Andhra University. His research and education activities in hardware cybersecurity include trustworthy ICs; processors and cyber-physical systems; security-aware computer-aided design, test, verification, validation, and reliability; nano meets security; hardware security competitions, benchmarks and metrics; biochip security; additive manufacturing security. He has published over 200 articles in leading journals and conference proceedings.

Ramesh Karri’ work on hardware cybersecurity received best paper award nominations (ICCD 2015 and DFTS 2015), awards (ITC 2014, CCS 2013, DFTS 2013 and VLSI Design 2012, ACM Student Research Competition at DAC 2012, ICCAD 2013, DAC 2014, ACM Grand Finals 2013, Kaspersky Challenge and Embedded Security Challenge). He also received the Humboldt Fellowship and the National Science Foundation CAREER Award.

Ramesh Karri co-founded the IEEE/ACM Symposium on Nanoscale Architectures (NANOARCH). He served as program/general chair of conferences including IEEE International Conference on Computer Design (ICCD), IEEE Symposium on Hardware-Oriented Security and Trust (HOST), IEEE Symposium on Defect and Fault Tolerant Nano VLSI Systems (DFTS), NANOARCH, RFIDSEC and WISEC. He serves on several program committees (DAC, ICCAD, HOST, ITC, VTS, ETS, ICCD, DTIS, WIFS).

Ramesh Karri serves as the Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security (2010-2014), IEEE Transactions on CAD (2014-), ACM Journal of Emerging Computing Technologies (2007-), ACM Transactions on Design Automation of Electronic Systems (2014-), IEEE Access (2015-), IEEE Transactions on Emerging Technologies in Computing (2015-), IEEE Design and Test (2015-) and IEEE Embedded Systems Letters (2016-). He served as an IEEE Computer Society Distinguished Visitor (2013-2015). He served on the Executive Committee of the IEEE/ACM Design Automation Conference leading the Security@DAC initiative (2014-2017). He has given invited keynotes, talks, and tutorials on Hardware Security and Trust (ESRF, DAC, DATE, VTS, ITC, ICCD, NATW, LATW, CROSSING, etc.).