BesFS: A POSIX Filesystem for Enclaves with a Mechanized Safety Proof


Shweta Shinde, University of California, Berkeley; Shengyi Wang and Pinghai Yuan, National University of Singapore; Aquinas Hobor, National University of Singapore & Yale-NUS College; Abhik Roychoudhury and Prateek Saxena, National University of Singapore


New trusted computing primitives such as Intel SGX have shown the feasibility of running user-level applications in enclaves on a commodity trusted processor without trusting a large OS. However, the OS can still compromise the integrity of an enclave by tampering with the system call return values. In fact, it has been shown that a subclass of these attacks, called Iago attacks, enables arbitrary logic execution in enclave programs. Existing enclave systems have very large TCB and they implement ad-hoc checks at the system call interface which are hard to verify for completeness. To this end, we present BesFS—the first filesystem interface which provably protects the enclave integrity against a completely malicious OS. We prove 167 lemmas and 2 key theorems in 4625 lines of Coq proof scripts, which directly proves the safety properties of the BesFS specification. BesFS comprises of 15 APIs with compositional safety and is expressive enough to support 31 real applications we test. BesFS integrates into existing SGX-enabled applications with minimal impact to TCB. BesFS can serve as a reference implementation for hand-coded API checks.

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@inproceedings {244038,
author = {Shweta Shinde and Shengyi Wang and Pinghai Yuan and Aquinas Hobor and Abhik Roychoudhury and Prateek Saxena},
title = {{BesFS}: A {POSIX} Filesystem for Enclaves with a Mechanized Safety Proof},
booktitle = {29th USENIX Security Symposium (USENIX Security 20)},
year = {2020},
isbn = {978-1-939133-17-5},
pages = {523--540},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = aug

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