Hardware Security Is Hard: How Hardware Boundaries Define Platform Security

Alex Matrosov, NVIDIA


Nowadays it's difficult to find any hardware vendor who develops all the components present in their platform. The big piece of it outsourced to OEM's includes firmware too. That creates additional complexity and limits hardware vendor control under the platform. That creates not only supply chain security risks but also produces security gaps in the threat modeling process by design.

In most cases, hardware vendors separate threat model and security boundaries for each hardware component present on the platform but in reality, it misses a lot of details which is directly reflected on platform security. This talk will look through the prism security problems and vulnerabilities created over those architecture design mistakes.

Alex Matrosov, NVIDIA

Alex Matrosov is a chief offensive security researcher at NVIDIA. He has more than two decades of experience with reverse engineering, advanced malware analysis, firmware security, and exploitation techniques. Before joining NVIDIA, Alex served as Principal Security Researcher at Intel Security Center of Excellence (SeCoE), spent more than six years in the Intel Advanced Threat Research team, and was Senior Security Researcher at ESET. Alex has authored and co-authored numerous research papers and is a frequent speaker at security conferences.

@inproceedings {256688,
author = {Alex Matrosov},
title = {Hardware Security Is Hard: How Hardware Boundaries Define Platform Security},
booktitle = {14th {USENIX} Workshop on Offensive Technologies ({WOOT} 20)},
year = {2020},
url = {https://www.usenix.org/conference/woot20/presentation/matrosov},
publisher = {{USENIX} Association},
month = aug,

Presentation Video