Calls: Send in your ideas. Deadline April 1, 2024
Theme fund: NGI Zero Core
Start: 2023-06
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Software engineering


Lightweight Elliptic Curve Cryptography for small chips

This project is building an open-source software library for modern Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC). To achieve this, the project aims for a unique trade-off between three different (and partly conflicting) goals that is currently not offered by any of the existing ECC libraries for small 8/16/32-bit microcontrollers. The first goal is efficiency, which includes not only fast execution times, but also small code size and low RAM usage. Equally important as efficiency is the second goal, namely security, and this includes not only the absence of subtle bugs that could leak secret information, but also robustness against timing-based side-channel attacks. The third goal is usability, which is achieved by a simple and intuitive API, an easily readable and well-commented source code, and a rich documentation with examples for common use cases.

IoTECC will come with highly-optimized Assembly functions for the low-level field-arithmetic for 8-bit AVR, 16-bit MSP430, as well as 32-bit ARM Cortex-M3 and RISC-V microcontrollers. The higher-level functions are written in C and shared among the different platforms to minimize the code base and reduce complexity.

  • The project's own website:

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This project was funded through the NGI0 Core Fund, a fund established by NLnet with financial support from the European Commission's Next Generation Internet programme, under the aegis of DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology under grant agreement No 101092990.