Last year when the HDCP master key was leaked, Intel was not that bothered, stating that anyone who would like to use or crack the master key would need to be in semi-conductor business and create an expensive customised chip.
Unfortunately for them, that doesn’t seem to be correct. As Ruhr University’s Secure Hardware Group together with PhD student Benno Lomb, has now been able to crack the HDCP copy protection. Using a custom board they have created using a handful of inexpensive FPGA chips.
The custom board and full rig cost the team just a little over $200 to purchase and includes a Xilinx Spartan-6 FPGA, equipped with a HDMI port and a serial RS232 communication port. Its sits between the Blu-ray player and a flat screen TV, and is capable of decrypting traffic between the two without being detected.
Germany’s Ruhr University of Bochum, led by professor Tim Güneysu explains:
“Our intention was rather to investigate the fundamental security of HDCP systems and to measure the actual financial outlay for a complete knockout,” – “The fact that we were able to achieve this in the context of a PhD thesis and using materials costing just €200 is not a ringing endorsement of the security of the current HDCP system.”
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