Hardware Trojans Inspired Hardware IP Watermarks

Mohammed Shayan, Kanad Basu, Ramesh Karri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Watermarking protects the rights of intellectual property (IP) vendors. Existing watermarking techniques have drawbacks including susceptibility to removal attacks and unpredictable design overhead. We propose a Hardware Trojan (HT) inspired watermarking methodology that overcomes these challenges. HT is a low-overhead design modification that is stealthily embedded in the design and is difficult to detect through conventional hardware testing and verification. The objective here is to use these qualities of HT to introduce watermark in the design. We demonstrate using experimental results and security analysis that HT-inspired watermark offers a strong proof of ownership which has a low-overhead, and resilience to removal attacks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalIEEE Design and Test
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019



  • Hardware
  • Hardware IP Protection
  • Hardware Trojan
  • IP networks
  • Low-overhead
  • Payloads
  • Scan
  • Stealthy
  • Timing
  • Trojan horses
  • Watermark
  • Watermarking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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