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Verifying Trusted Code Execution using ARM Trustzone


R.Sebas Sujeen, Sridhar Periasami


Vol. 13  No. 10  pp. 41-46


In this paper, we present a comprehensive analysis of a software based attestation system, Pioneer [1] which was designed for the x86 processor architecture and show how it would fail for RISC processor architecture like ARM. We then present an overview of the Security Extensions implemented in Cortex-A9 processors and higher, referred to as Trustzone[2] and how it can be leveraged to guarantee trusted code execution even on untrusted systems. We also discuss TOCTOU (Time of Check, Time of Use) issues with remote attestation and how it can be resolved leveraging Trustzone. We conclude with a discussion of how this can be used to implement a Kernel Integrity monitor that can be used to detect sophisticated malware like rootkits.


remote attestation, Trustzone, TOCTOU attack, NS bit, rootkit, Kernel Integrity Monitor