[Cryptography] Photon beam splitters for "true" random number generation ?

Jerry Leichter leichter at lrw.com
Tue Dec 29 10:17:37 EST 2015

>> Of course, *if* such a failure is possible, the next question is 
>> whether it can be "encouraged" by an attacker.
> 3) It is uneconomical for the attacker to "tailor" the flash-chip
> physics.  That's because there are incomparably easier ways of
> compromising the overall device, e.g. "tailoring" the controller
> chip, which they have already been doing, e.g. Stuxnet....
If someone is in a position to change the hardware, there are tons of things they can do that are certainly undetectable by software, and even extremely difficult to detect by hardware inspected.  Inducing rare faults is hardly high on the list of attacks it would be worth mounting; there are many easier, more effective things to do.

I was instead raising the question of environmentally induced faults.  Could playing around with the power, or heating or cooling, or microwave irradiation, encourage the particular "doesn't erase but can still be read" behavior?

Yes, all of this is almost certainly tin hat territory, but it's by exploring the apparently completely "out there" possibilities that one learns where the edges of the envelope within which safe operation is possible lie.

                                                        -- Jerry

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