Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Arlington, VA, United States (4E) – The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) said 40 percent of software exploits available to hackers can be eliminated if a handful of different types of hardware weaknesses could be eliminated, and it’s begun a project named MORPHEUS to do just that.
DARPA announced it will invest $3.6 million to develop a revolutionary computer and its hardware it refers to as an “unsolvable puzzle,” a reference to the Rubik’s Cube. The project is intended to be a more robust alternative to the ineffective “patch and pray” approach to cybersecurity that simply responds to cyberattacks.
The MORPHEUS hardware is designed so that information can be quickly and randomly shuffled around a computer instead of hurriedly developing software patches for security vulnerabilities and hoping they fix the problem.
Trying to hack MORPHEUS will be the equivalent of “solving a Rubik’s cube,” said Todd Austin, a professor of computer science at the University of Michigan.
“Every time you blink, I rearrange it,” said Austin.
MORPHEUS is expected to provide a solution to a wide range of security issues through its special hardware design.
It will reportedly render adverse software exploits ineffective using computer circuits designed to randomly shuffle data around a computer system. This way, the location of that software bug, as well as the location of any valuable data (such as passwords) will constantly change even if an attacker finds a bug and tries to exploit i.
MORPHEUS is expected to be an elegant solution to some of the world’s most annoying cybersecurity issues.
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