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Attacking the BitLocker boot process

: Türpe, S.; Poller, A.; Steffan, J.; Stotz, J.-P.; Trukenmüller, J.

Postprint urn:nbn:de:0011-n-947423 (160 KByte PDF)
MD5 Fingerprint: b42c06072d237fe3d07359c704499b90
The original publication is available at
Created on: 30.6.2009

Chen, L.:
Trusted computing. Second international conference, Trust 2009 : Oxford, UK, April 6-8, 2009; Proceedings
Berlin: Springer, 2009 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science 5471)
ISBN: 3-642-00586-1
ISBN: 978-3-642-00586-2
ISSN: 0302-9743
International Conference on the Technical and Socio-Economic Aspects of Trusted Computing (TRUST) <2, 2009, Oxford>
Conference Paper, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer SIT ()
trusted computing; disk encryption; security

We discuss five attack strategies against BitLocker, which target the way BitLocker is using the TPM sealing mechanism. BitLocker is a disk encryption feature included in some versions of Microsoft Windows. It represents a state-of-the-art design, enhanced with TPM support for improved security. We show that, under certain assumptions, a dedicated attacker can circumvent the protection and break confidentiality with limited effort. Our attacks neither exploit vulnerabilities in the encryption itself nor do they directly attack the TPM. They rather exploit sequences of actions that Trusted Computing fails to prevent, demonstrating limitations of the technology.