Hack-proof computers may soon be a reality; here’s how

Cyber threats are on the rise in recent years. Some recent ones include “Meltdown” and “Spectre”, which put millions of computers at risk because of flawed chips. A chip powers the computer like the brain does in humans and this is the reason why it is the primary target of the majority of attacks.

Ever wondered, what would it be like if this chip was made robust enough to withstand any hacking attempt? Some researchers are now working in this area to make computer chips hack-proof.

Security researchers are working on a new CPU design named “Morpheus” that is expected to be nearly hack-proof. This chipset will be able to prevent a significant number of attacks. Encryption has been used to make this chip more powerful than any current generation chip.

In order to test the effectiveness of the new chipset, the security researchers put forward a challenge to over 580 White Hat hackers to break the security parameters used in the chipset. The hackers tried for over 13,000 hours however were unable to bypass the security.

Morpheus, the chipset, leverages encryption of the highest standard. As per the team leader of the project the chipset utilises a cipher, an algorithm known as “Simon” that takes care of the encryption and decryption.

Simon ensures encryption standards for the chipset as well as keeps altering it every few milliseconds. In simple words the algorithm helps in encrypting components of the chipset to hide the way it functions which makes it difficult for attackers to hack it.

This latest technique simply makes the whole working process of the chipset seem like a puzzle that keeps changing from time to time, which is the reason why hackers have a difficult time solving it. The researchers stated that Morpheus will be able to safeguard the computer against low-level attacks or remote code execution attacks (RCEs), wherein hackers introduce malicious code into a chipset taking advantage of a flaw in programming. However, the chipset may not be able to offer protection from advanced attacks such as SQL injections.

The sad state of computer processors and software will take some time to improve, especially in an age where hackers have evolved so much. However, there is a ray of hope that computers in the coming two or three years will be able to prevent basic cyberattacks and exploits. This will be great news for software and hardware companies as they will only be required to focus on advanced level cyber attacks.