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Description The terms "technological fix" and "engineering" have become somewhat pejorative in recent years, applied to thoughtless short-term solutions that result in long-term problems. But in this elegantly reasoned and passionately argued book, Samuel Florman suggests that at this moment in history a few good technological fixes are just what the world needs.
The profession of engineering is rarely the topic of serious public discussion. Multimedia, virtual reality, information superhighway - these are the buzzwords of the day. But real engineers, the people who conceive of computers and oversee their manufacture, the people who design and build information systems, cars, bridges, airplanes, and so many other things that are central to our lives, are nameless and obscure.
There are no engineering heroes; it has been a long time since Eiffel built his tower and the Roeblings built their bridge. Our society takes engineering for granted, and all of us are the poorer for this.
Samuel C. Florman
Florman's response is this book. It is a clarion call to society - we must awaken to the reality that the continuing quality of our life is dependent on increasingly creative technological solutions to the problems we face. We need cleaner, more economical engines, faster computers, more power, and a healthier planet Engineers, Florman argues, know better than to expect perfection in the real world. Our leaders must take on this engineering mind-set and design solutions to our moral and social problems that fit within the constraints of time, materials, and money.
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click This conflicts with the objectives achieved by a BGA package, namely high signal density and lower cost per pin. From the economic perspective, the design of RF receivers and power amplifiers is still a specialty, and it may simply be uneconomical for MediaTek to negotiate the purchase of bare die from third-party vendors for package-level integration into their chipsets. Instead, it seems MediaTek had intentionally dis-integrated the RF front end and ensured the presence of multiple vendors to create a competitive market for such chips.
All this points to the likelihood that for some time, direct introspection will remain a viable technique, as its targets are buses that connect between the discrete RF front ends and the highly integrated chipsets driving them. In the case of the Introspection Engine, the Evil Maid may manifest as anything from a literal maid who tampers with the phone while cleaning the premises, to a border inspection where the phone is examined in private within a state-operated facility, perhaps for an extended period of time.
Significantly, the Introspection Engine is explicitly not to be field-upgraded: field units should not support any simple firmware upgrade option to guard against trivial Evil Maid attacks. The Introspection Engine is also designed for easy self-test, in the sense that one can verify that introspection is working by simply bringing the phone out of airplane mode and observing that all the monitored signals go live.
If a monitored signal fails to report out of airplane mode, one can directly conclude that perhaps the Intropsection Engine is faulty or has been tampered with. Of course, such a test should be conducted only in safety, perhaps in advance of entering a danger zone. These implants could be overmolded within a QFP quad flat pack leadframe and laser-etched with markings rendering them indistinguishable from genuine components, at least to the untrained eye. Finally, the relatively high power signature of such an implant could be masked by including a genuine MCU in the same package, and allowing the genuine MCU to run mock UI code thus conserving power until a trigger is detected which powers up the implant and executes the desired attack.
QFP devices were chosen to enable technicians of moderate skill with simple tools to build an Introspection Engine from scratch. Although WLCSP devices are more challenging for hand assembly, they are cheap and accessible thanks to their popularity in mobile phones. The advantage of WLCSP parts with respect to Evil Maid attacks is that they have no package — they are essentially naked pieces of silicon.
Thus spoofing these would require fabricating custom silicon. Silicon fabrication is of course possible, but more difficult than overmolding an off—the-shelf implant module. Most traditional static defenses in common use today such as locks, alarms, and tamper-evident seals can be overcome by a sophisticated and dedicated adversary given enough uninterrupted time-on-target. Similarly, we refer readers to discussions of PUFs — physically unclonable functions — to create tamper-evident seals and to mark circuit boards and key components.
A well-executed PUF can greatly complicated an attack even by a well-prepared adversary, creating a time barrier.
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Given that the Introspection Engine is meant to always be kept within field of view, defeating the tamper-evident seals can take several minutes, if not hours, for a well-trained adversary to bypass. The bottom line is that in reality, as a small-footprint security-critical device, the Introspection Engine is not meant to be left unattended. For example, it would be easier to shim something into a shoe or a suitcase. So far, we have discussed the discovery and mapping of test points on the iPhone6 motherboard. Unfortunately, test points are scattered around the motherboard, and are difficult to identify through casual inspection.
In order to facilitate harnessing a phone with test points, we have developed a technique for creating a wrap-around flexible printed circuit FPC with tapping lands that coincide with the test point locations. Once the tap board is tacked in place using a set of easy-to-locate physical guides, the tapping lands within the tap board will tend to lay over their intended test points, easing the process of harnessing the phone while simultaneously providing a method for managing and routing the signals to a single FPC connector.
Another advantage of the tap board is it modularizes the phone-specific tapping process, thus allowing the mix-and-match of various tap boards with various signal analysis modules. Accuracy: Test points can be as small as 0. This means measurements of test point locations must be accurate to 1 part in Double-sided: The same accuracy has to be maintained while wrapping around to the opposing side of the motherboard.
The first step in creating the FPC is to create a high-resolution, scale-accurate scan of the motherboard.
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