DARPA eyes cybersecurity for Internet of Things and embedded computing

U.S. military researchers are asking cybersecurity experts at Praxis Engineering Technologies Inc. in Annapolis Junction, Md., to find new ways of providing cybersecurity for embedded computing and Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

1607mae News Tablet Computers

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio - U.S. military researchers are asking cybersecurity experts at Praxis Engineering Technologies Inc. in Annapolis Junction, Md., to find new ways of providing cybersecurity for embedded computing and Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

Officials of the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, announced a $12.6 million contract to Praxis for the Leveraging the Analog Domain for Security (LADS) program.

LADS seeks to develop a new protection paradigm that separates security monitoring from the protected system by focusing on low-resource, embedded, and IoT devices. AFRL awarded the contract on behalf of the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va.

1607mae News Tablet Computers
Government researchers are trying to find efficient ways to apply cybersecurity to relatively low-power computers, handheld devices, and embedded systems.

Praxis experts will explore technologies to associate the running state of a device with its involuntary analog emissions across the device's electromagnetic emissions, acoustic emanations, power fluctuations, and thermal output variations. The intent is to enable a decoupled monitoring device to confirm the software that is running on the monitored device, to determine which instruction, basic block, or function the software is executing, or which part of memory the software is accessing.

The LADS program seeks to develop new cybersecurity capabilities for embedded and mission-specific devices. These kinds of devices have limitations that larger computer systems do not, such as low storage and memory capacity, slow processor speed, low power consumption, intermittent connectivity, and lack of trustworthy visibility into system status and operation. Compounding these limitations are cost sensitivity, limited ability for these devices to work together, and limited ability to modify and upgrade them once they are in the field. These factors limit the use of cybersecurity developed for bigger devices.

LADS seeks to develop new cybersecurity capabilities by combining analog and digital technologies. The combination of analog signal analysis and program analysis techniques will enable external monitoring devices to detect attempted cyber attacks not only on embedded computing and IoT devices, but also to larger information technology devices.

For this program, DARPA is asking Praxis to provide multi-model analog sensing to determine adaptively what features to compute from signals a device emits during training and testing. Praxis experts also will extract sub-bands of interest, eliminate noise from individual signals, and remove interfering transmissions emitted from other devices in the vicinity.

Praxis will do the work in Annapolis Junction, Md., and should be finished by July 2020.

FOR MORE INFORMATION visit Praxis Engineering Technologies online at www.praxiseng.com.

More in Computers