A key-centric processor architecture for secure computing
May 3, 2016
We describe a novel key-centric processor architecture in which each piece of data or code can be protected by encryption while at rest, in transit, and in use. Using embedded key management for cryptographic key handling, our processor permits mutually distrusting software written by different entities to work closely together without divulging algorithmic parameters or secret program data. Since the architecture performs encryption, decryption, and key management deeply within the processor hardware, the attack surface is minimized without significant impact on performance or ease of use. The current prototype implementation is based on the Sparc architecture and is highly applicable to small to medium-sized processing loads.