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Quantum Hardware Security

Explain the project a bit. What is it about and what it is trying to achieve.

Summary Physical Unclonable Functions (PUFs) are physical devices with unique behaviour, due to the imperfections and natural randomness during their manufacturing procedure, which makes them hard to clone. A large variety of PUF schemes have been mass-produced for a large domain of applications from anti-counterfeiting, identification, authentication and key generation to advanced protocols such as oblivious transfer, key exchange, key renovation and virtual proof of reality. Considering the importance of PUFs as a hardware security primitive in these real-world applications, it is crucial to investigate their security in the quantum regime as well. Recently, the inherent unclonability of quantum states has been exploited for defining quantum analogue to classical PUFs. We provide the first comprehensive study of the Quantum Physical Unclonable Functions (QPUFs) and develop a formal quantum security framework for our analysis. In doing so we define a new class of quantum attacks, called General Quantum Emulation Attack (QEA) that similar to the classical setting, where machine learning techniques have been developed to demonstrate the vulnerability of PUF, our QEA also exploits previously captured valid challenge-response pairs to emulate the action of an unknown quantum transformation on new input. We devise a concrete attack based on an existing quantum emulation algorithm and use it to show that a family of QPUFs do not provide previously claimed strong security. Our investigation, however, put forward the most general definitions of QPUFs that remains secure against the strongest possible quantum adversary, compatible with a practical setting where most of QPUF will be utilised.

Keywords: quantum hardware security, quantum cryptography, authentication

Related Publications:

[1] Abdulaziz Al-Meer and Saif Al-Kuwari, "Physical Unclonable Functions (PUF) for IoT Devices", ACM Computing Surveys 55 14s, 1 (2023).

[2] Rasit Onur Topaloglu, "Quantum Logic Locking for Security", J 6 3, 411 (2023).

[3] Hu Yuan, Daniel S. Fowler, Carsten Maple, and Gregory Epiphaniou, "Analysis of outage performance in a 6G‐V2X communications system utilising free‐space optical quantum key distribution", IET Quantum Communication qtc2.12067 (2023).

[4] Niklas Pirnay, Anna Pappa, and Jean-Pierre Seifert, "Learning classical readout quantum PUFs based on single-qubit gates", Quantum Machine Intelligence 4 2, 14 (2022).

[5] Mina Doosti, Niraj Kumar, Mahshid Delavar, and Elham Kashefi, "Client-server Identification Protocols with Quantum PUF", ACM Transactions on Quantum Computing 2 3, 1 (2021).

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