Secure firmware validation and update for consumer devices in home NetWorking


Embedded systems are a lot of than ever gift in shopper electronics devices like home routers, personal computers, smartphones, smartcards, various sensors to name some. Firmware, which is embedded software specifically designed for monitoring and control in resource constrained conditions, was not a major attack target. But, recent serious cyber attacks concentrate on firmware rather than application or operating system levels, as a result of exploiting the firmware level offers stealth capabilities, e.g., anti-virus software and operating system cannot reveal such a firmware level exploit. A firmware validation that ensures firmware integrity is therefore required to detect firmware tempering attacks. A remote firmware update is additionally needed for client devices connected to the.Net. In this paper, a secure firmware validation and update scheme is introduced for shopper devices in a very home NetWorking setting. The proposed scheme utilizes an IDbased mutual authentication and key derivation to securely distribute a firmware image. A firmware fragmentation with hash chaining is additionally applied to ensure authenticity of the fragmented firmware image. Security analysis results are presented whereas concerns are mentioned.

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