Common Risks — IP Security Solutions

IP security is critical. Yet, semiconductor IPs can be compromised by real-world IP security threats. Unless you do something about it.

100s of Different IPs

The average SoC has more than 100 different IPs coming from many different sources. Some are produced by internal IP development teams. Others come from external vendors. How can you be certain that these IPs are safe?

IP Security Solutions for Common Risks

Are your semiconductor IPs at risk? What can you do about it?

Unknown Attack Surfaces

IPs have an attack surface — and it’s critical that you understand it. Some parts of the attack surfaces are well known. Others can be discovered during analysis, testing, or out in the field. If you don’t understand the attack surface, you can’t prevent security threats.

Evolving IPs

IPs evolve as SoCs are assembled. There are various mutations, feature changes, and revisions that need to be incorporated into the chip. With so many changes — and tight timelines — not every change can be thoroughly verified. As a result, some simple changes are ignored or left to be tested later — and are then forgotten.

The final SoC is a patchwork of IPs with various origins, quality levels, and sometimes poorly understood attack surfaces. To assure security, you need the right solution.

What You Need in an IP Security Assurance Solution

To successfully assure IP security, mitigate security risks, and stop security threats, you need the right solution.

Traceability, in particular, is critical to IP security. You need an IP security solution that can track your IP throughout versions and designs, giving you visibility into your IPs. Even when they’re reused.

Integrations are also critical to IP security. For example, an integration with a defect tracking tool will help you understand which IPs are affected when a security vulnerability is detected.

Here are some of the key functionalities you need to assure security:

  • Bill of materials (BoM).
  • Metadata management.
  • IP management.
  • Workspace management.
  • Design data management.
  • IP Geofencing.
  • Engineering systems integrations.
  • Analytics.
IP Security Assurance
Ip Security Solution

How the Perforce IP Security Solution Works

Helix IPLM For IP Security Assurance

Helix IPLM (formerly Methodics IPLM) is the Perforce solution for IP security assurance for your IPs and SoCs.

That’s because Helix IPLM:

  • Makes it easy to manage 100s of IPs.
  • Helps you understand each IP’s attack surface.
  • Keeps track of changes to your IPs over time, establishing full design traceability.

Helix IPLM provides a definitive, single source of truth for all IP content across all projects. You can use this IPLM platform to connect design information throughout the enterprise — from origin to the delivery of a final design.  

Designers, SoC assemblers, and security experts can all collaborate in Helix IPLM. They’ll be able to determine exactly which version of which IP was used in each design.

Plus, Helix IPLM integrates with engineering systems, including Helix Core for data management, and defect tracking tools. This makes it easy for you to see exactly which IPs and design assets are impacted whenever a security vulnerability is found. A vulnerability can be annotated on the exact versions of impacted IPs — and corrected in later versions.

Stay Protected With IP Geofencing

Geofencing restricts IP availability in certain geographies, regardless of access.

A unique capability in the IPLM space, the Helix IPLM platform enables IP geofencing by:

  • Allowing IPs to carry “include” and “exclude” lists of geographies.
  • Restricting IPs, regardless of access permissions, based on these lists.
  • IP data cannot reside in user workspaces or caches in these restricted geographies.
  • IP metadata cannot be visible or extracted in these geographies.

With IP geofencing, you can minimize IP leakage (which can potentially cost millions of dollars) and bring your organization into compliance with EAR and ITAR.


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Find out how Helix IPLM can help you assure IP security. Get in touch with an IP expert today.