Security Assessment of Cyberphysical Digital Microfluidic Biochips

Sk Subidh Ali, Mohamed Ibrahim, Ozgur Sinanoglu, Krishnendu Chakrabarty, Ramesh Karri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A digital microfluidic biochip (DMFB) is an emerging technology that enables miniaturized analysis systems for point-of-care clinical diagnostics, DNA sequencing, and environmental monitoring. A DMFB reduces the rate of sample and reagent consumption, and automates the analysis of assays. In this paper, we provide the first assessment of the security vulnerabilities of DMFBs. We identify result-manipulation attacks on a DMFB that maliciously alter the assay outcomes. Two practical result-manipulation attacks are shown on a DMFB platform performing enzymatic glucose assay on serum. In the first attack, the attacker adjusts the concentration of the glucose sample and thereby modifies the final result. In the second attack, the attacker tampers with the calibration curve of the assay operation. We then identify denial-of-service attacks, where the attacker can disrupt the assay operation by tampering either with the droplet-routing algorithm or with the actuation sequence. We demonstrate these attacks using a digital microfluidic synthesis simulator. The results show that the attacks are easy to implement and hard to detect. Therefore, this work highlights the need for effective protections against malicious modifications in DMFBs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7360149
Pages (from-to)445-458
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE/ACM Transactions on Computational Biology and Bioinformatics
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2016

Fingerprint

Digital microfluidics
Biochips
Microfluidics
Assays
Attack
Glucose
Point-of-Care Systems
Manipulation
Environmental Monitoring
Enzyme Assays
Routing algorithms
DNA Sequence Analysis
Calibration
DNA Sequencing
Denial of Service
DNA
Simulators
Routing Algorithm
Systems Analysis
Vulnerability

Keywords

  • Cyber physical digitalmicrofludic biochip
  • denial of service attack
  • DMFB in-vitro
  • DMFB synthesis
  • security
  • tampering
  • Trojan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Genetics
  • Applied Mathematics

Cite this

Security Assessment of Cyberphysical Digital Microfluidic Biochips. / Ali, Sk Subidh; Ibrahim, Mohamed; Sinanoglu, Ozgur; Chakrabarty, Krishnendu; Karri, Ramesh.

In: IEEE/ACM Transactions on Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Vol. 13, No. 3, 7360149, 01.05.2016, p. 445-458.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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