Our favorite FPGA security hacker, Colin O’Flynn, has a new Kickstarter project that just went online. It’s the ChipWhisperer-Lite which packs a serious punch with a Spartan 6 FPGA, 10-bit ADC, and an XMega Micro. Included with the board is software and tutorials to get you up to speed with embedded hardware security research projects such as side-channel power analysis and glitching.
ChipWhisperer® is the first open-source toolchain (GPL licenced) for embedded hardware security research including side-channel power analysis and glitching. The innovative synchronous capture technology is unmatched by other tools, even from commercial vendors. Similar commercial equipment is too expensive ($30k – $400k), and being closed-source limits usefulness for academics. Instead this project bridges the gap between academic research and in-the-trenches engineering. Several peer-reviewed publications describe the design, matched with hours of hands-on tutorials for getting started.