Reliable, Secure, and Efficient Hardware Implementation of Password Manager System Using SRAM PUF

Mohammad Mohammadinodoushan, Bertrand Cambou, Fatemeh Afghah, Christopher Robert Philabaum, Ian Burke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Using Physical Unclonable Functions (PUFs) within the server-side has been recently proposed to address security vulnerabilities of the password (PW) authentication mechanism, including attacks on the database (DB) of user credentials. Practicing this idea using available memory technologies and constrained hardware modules may offer an additional hardware security layer. Thus, finding the PWs would require the attacker to access both the hardware containing the PUF and the information stored in the DB. PUFs have been used with other cryptographic algorithms in previous studies to improve the system's security further. However, these studies have overlooked the challenges of implementing these algorithms with constrained hardware devices. Therefore, the trade-off between the achieved security and desired efficiency is still a challenge. The presented hardware-software PUF-based solutions lead to faster computation in the server-side hardware. Also, the client-side protocol can cope with the resource limitations existing in essential applications, including constrained IoTs. Moreover, the scheme handles the instability and bit alias of the Static Random-Access Memory (SRAM) PUF. This paper's reliable, low-cost, and efficient prototype shows the functionality of a hardware-dependent protocol that is resistant to insider, PW guessing, and man-in-the-middle attacks. The presented hardware-software can be easily integrated with the server-side. Statistical tests on the embedded SRAM show that this paper protocol improves PUF entropy responses stored in the DB. Besides, the experimental results of this work show the possibility of obtaining an SRAM with very low intra-PUF variation without using any extra hardware overhead.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155711-155725
Number of pages15
JournalIEEE Access
StatePublished - 2021


  • PUF-based security
  • Password security
  • authentication
  • database hacking
  • hash chain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • General Materials Science
  • General Engineering


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