Home → Magazine Archive → June 2019 (Vol. 62, No. 6) → Through Computer Architecture, Darkly → Abstract

Through Computer Architecture, Darkly

By A. T. Markettos, R. N. M. Watson, S. W. Moore, P. Sewell, P. G. Neumann

Communications of the ACM, Vol. 62 No. 6, Pages 25-27

[article image]

Spectre,11 Meltdown,13 Foreshadow,18,20 Rowhammer,9 Spoiler,9—suddenly it seems as if there is a new and unending stream of vulnerabilities in processors. Previous niche concepts such as speculative execution and cache timing side-channels have taken center stage. Across the whole hardware/software system, new vulnerabilities such as insufficiently protected memory access from untrustworthy PCIe or Thunderbolt USB-C peripherals,15 malicious Wi-Fi firmware,4 or alleged hardware implants14 are also starting to emerge.

We may be facing a crisis in systems design. What might we do about it? Here, we consider whether existing approaches are adequate, and where substantial new work is needed.


No entries found