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Research Fellow

University of Birmingham - School of Computer Sciences

Location: Birmingham
Salary: £32,348 to £42,155 with potential progression once in post to £44,737
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 27th January 2023
Closes: 19th February 2023
Job Ref: 95352

This is an exciting opportunity to join the University of Birmingham’s Centre for Cyber Security and Privacy on an exciting EPSRC funded project ‘SIPP - Secure IoT Processor Platform with Remote Attestation’.

Project Summary:

As the world becomes ever more connected, the vast number of Internet of things (IoT) devices necessitates the use of smart, autonomous machine-to-machine communications; however, this poses serious security and privacy issues as we will no longer have direct control over with what or whom our devices communicate. Counterfeit, hacked, or cloned devices acting on a network can have significant consequences: for individuals through the leakage of confidential and personal information, in terms of monetary costs (for e.g., the loss of access to web services - Mirai attack on Dyn took down Twitter, Spotify, Reddit); or for critical national infrastructure, through the loss of control of safety-critical industrial and cyber-physical IoT systems. In addition, IoT devices are often low-cost, low power devices that are restricted in both memory and computing power. A major challenge is how to address the need for security in such resource-constrained devices.

The SIPP project aims to rethink how security is built into IoT processor platforms. Firstly, the architectural fundamentals of a processor design need to be re-engineered to assure the security of individual on-chip components. This has become increasingly evident with the recent Spectre and Meltdown attacks. On the upper layer of systems-on-chip (SoCs), hardware authentication of chip sub-systems and the entire chip is crucial to detect malicious hardware modification. Then, at the systems layer (i.e., multiple chips on a common printed circuit board), innovative approaches for remote attestation will be investigated to determine the integrity at board level. Finally, the security achieved at all hierarchical layers will be assessed by investigating physical-level vulnerabilities to ensure there is no physical leakage of the secrets on which each layer relies. The proposed project brings together the core partners of the NCSC/EPSRC-funded Research Institute in Secure Hardware and Embedded Systems (RISE), that is, Queen's University Belfast and the Universities of Cambridge, Bristol and Birmingham, with the leading academics in the field of hardware security and security architecture design from the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University, to develop a novel secure IoT processor platform with remote attestation implemented on the RISC-V architecture.

Person Specifications:

  • First degree in area of specialism and normally, a higher degree relevant to research area or equivalent qualifications
  • High level analytical capability
  • Ability to communicate complex information clearly
  • Fluency in relevant models, techniques or methods and ability to contribute to developing new ones
  • Contribute to the planning and organising of the research programme and/or specific research project

Informal enquiries can be made to Prof Mark Ryan at m.d.ryan@bham.ac.uk.

To download the full job description and details of this position and submit an electronic application online please click on the Apply Online button above or visit our careers website;

https://edzz.fa.em3.oraclecloud.com/hcmUI/CandidateExperience/en/sites/CX_6001/job/1170/?utm_medium=jobshare

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