Hardware Reverse Engineering

Definition updated on November 2023

What is hardware reverse engineering?

Reverse engineering (RE) is the process of obtaining information about the composition and operation of an unidentified design. While the unknowable design in software RE is a software binary, the unknowable hardware modules in hardware RE, including integrated circuits (IC), are unknowable. Hardware RE is typically viewed as an adversarial technique. While identifying crucial modules for further exploitation, installing hardware Trojans, copying, counterfeiting, and overproduction are examples of malignant motivations, RE can also be used to recognize and counteract these assault scenarios.

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