Category Archive: Master Thesis

Current proposals for Master thesis topics. These proposals are only for students of the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB). We strongly encourage students to come up with their own ideas for their Master Thesis topics. If you have an idea you can always contact us and we will discuss it. Note: This list might be on several pages, click on "Older posts" at the bottom of this page to see more proposals for Master Thesis.

Feb 27

Side-channel attacks based on deep learning

Side-Channel Attacks are attacks against implementations of cryptographic algorithms. These attacks exploit physical properties of a device under attack. For example an attacker can measure the execution time or power consumption of a device while it executes a cryptographic algorithm.

Based on neural network, deep learning represents an active research in machine learning that allows producing automatic attacks requiring no a priori information on the underlying phenomenon. The purpose of this work is to shed new light on the capabilities of deep learning in side-channel attacks.

This work is in collaboration with RISCURE (, a company working on security evaluation of embedded devices.

Supervision: Liran Lerman – Director: Olivier Markowitch

Feb 27

Implementation aspects of Keccak

The purpose of this work is to scientifically analyze the gain obtained by implementing a parallel mode of use on top of Keccak. This includes tree hash modes and parallel authenticated encryption schemes. The student’s tasks would include:
– to model the performance of a mode as a function of its parameters;
– to measure the actual performance and to scientifically compare it to
the model;
– to propose optimal parameters or to fine-tune the mode.

Supervision: Keccak team – Director : Olivier Markowitch (ULB)

Feb 27

Side-channel aspects of Keccak-based authentication and/or encryption schemes

The purpose of this work is to analyze the sensitivity to side-channel attacks of an implementation of the Keccak-f round function, which is relevant to any FIPS 202 instance in the presence of a key, or to the Keyak or Ketje authenticated encryption schemes. The student’s tasks would include:
– to model the leakage;
– to analyze an implementation;
– to scientifically compare the obtained results to the model;
– to propose countermeasures (or improvements thereof).

Supervision: Keccak team – Director : Olivier Markowitch (ULB)

Jan 25

Secured RTOS, HIPPEROS as a case study

The aim of the thesis is to propose measures to introduce security in the architecture of a modern Real-Time Operating System (RTOS) in the sense of allowing Multiple Levels of Security (MILS). This means both the security of the RTOS itself related to the authentication of the kernel, updates, drivers, services, … as well as the secure management of applications (for example: registration of a new application, update and upgrade of applications and execution of applications) and the security of data inside applications. The student would study the HIPPEROS architecture and propose, based on the state-of-the-art of secure operating systems, how to smoothly integrate such an architecture in the existing development process of HIPPEROS. The study would allow developers to implement practically and easily the proposed architecture in the operating system.

One of the challenges is to define a predictable real-time architecture. An interesting aspect of the proposed work is to deal with different domains of computer sciences: operating systems, real-time and security.


Contacts: Olivier Markowitch and Joël Goossens

Jan 08

Comparison of acquisition techniques for side channel attacks

In order to conduct a side channel attack such as power analysis, we first need
to collect data (power traces). There exist several ways to acquire power traces from a device, each of these techniques also have several parameters. The goal of this master thesis (rather oriented to electronic aspects) is to compare different acquisition techniques that might be used for power analysis.

Contact : Liran Lerman et Olivier Markowitch