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Cryptographic Implementations: Hardware vs. Software (Download)

Nov. 8, 2022
Download the PDF of the fifth chapter of the “The Cryptography Handbook.” It shines a light on the differences of implementing cryptographic solutions via hardware and software, and the essential steps in securely booting a connected device.

Check out the other chapters in the Communication Series:  The Cryptography Handbook

Modern cryptographic algorithms can be implemented using dedicated cryptographic hardware or software running on general-purpose hardware. For various reasons, dedicated cryptographic hardware provides a better solution for most applications.

Secure Boot and Secure Download—What Are They and Why Are They Important?

Among the everyday IoT devices that use embedded hardware are:

  • Home devices: Wi-Fi cameras, IoT thermostats, and smoke detectors
  • Medical devices
  • Wearables, fitness trackers, or smart watches
  • Industrial machines such as robotic arms in factories


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