Robust Device Authentication for Integrated Circuits

Technology No. 20160192

Physical Unclonable Function Authentication with Self Correction

A lightweight, secure and reliable method authenticates chip-unique signatures from integrated circuits to address electronics counterfeiting. The method, based on Physical Unclonable Function (PUF) authentication, uses a key (selected for authentication purposes) with a two-level finite-state machine (FSM) to correct erroneous bits in the authentication process that can be generated by age, temperature, voltage, and various environmental variations. The technology includes a FSM and a physical structure that provides a response to a challenge. However, before the physical structure is ever provided with the challenge, the response to the challenge is unpredictable. The FSM moves from an initial state to an intermediate state when it receives a response from the physical structure, and moves from the intermediate state to a final state when it receives a key. The final state indicates whether the physical structure is a counterfeit physical structure.

More Efficient Error Correcting Code

PUFs extract chip-unique signatures from integrated circuits (ICs) by exploiting uncontrollable randomness due to manufacturing process variations. These signatures can then be used for many hardware security applications such as authentication, anti-counterfeiting, IC metering, signature generation and obfuscation. However, most of these applications require error correcting methods to produce consistent PUF responses across different environmental conditions. Sometimes, due to environmental variations, PUF signatures are erroneous, and while an error correction coder can correct these errors, it requires a large increase in hardware. This technology generates the correct signature, without requiring any additional error correction circuitry, by associating a key with the signature during the design time. Experimental results show that this self-correcting two-level FSM approach costs significantly less than commonly used error correcting codes. In addition, the new method consumes 2 to 10 times less area and 20 to 100 times less power than previous technology.


  • Authenticates chip-unique signatures from integrated circuits
  • Physical Unclonable Function (PUF) authentication
  • Self-correcting two-level finite-state machine (FSM) approach associates a key with the signature
  • Corrects erroneous bits in authentication process
  • Physical structure provides a response to a challenge
  • Lightweight, secure and reliable
  • Significantly lower cost than commonly used error correcting codes
  • Consumes 2 to 10 times less area
  • Uses 20 to 100 times less power


  • Integrated circuit chips
  • Integrated devices
  • Anti-counterfeiting measures

Phase of Development - Prototype development

Keshab K. Parhi, PhD
Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
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Chris H. Kim, PhD
Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
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Yingjie Lao
Electrical and Computer Engineering

Reliable PUF-Based Local Authentication With Self-Correction
IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems, Volume: 36, Issue: 2, Feb. 2017

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