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Security Masters Dojo

Advanced and intermediate security training and technology enhancement for information security professionals.

CanSecWest: Security Masters Dojo Vancouver

Applied Hardware Attacks: Rapid Prototyping

Register for March 14-15, 2020 (2-day Course)

Joseph FitzPatrick


Ever ripped open an IOT device and found yourself overwhelmed with how to make contact with the hardware you see inside? Ever put together an awesome hardware hack but need to clean it up, make it reliable, and make it repeatable?

This is a two-day crash course in rapid prototyping for hardware hacking. We’ll spend most of our time working hands-on to meet the mechanical, electrical, and protocol requirements for interfacing with our target hardware.

After a brief lectures on each topic, hands-on labs will guide attendees through the processes of:

This course emphasizes how to connect to hardware for those that are already familiar with the what and why. Iti's specifically geared towards attendees who have already completed an introductory hardware hacking course including some soldering experience.

Combining this course with Applied Hardware Attacks : Hardware Implants would expand an additional opportunity to practice these skills.

Key Learning Outcomes:

  1. Practice on how to use various rapid prototyping tools
  2. Knowledge of the tradeoffs of these tools as well as other options
  3. Feeling of being enabled to do more advanced hardware hacks more reliably.

PREREQUISITE WARNING Each class has prerequisites for software loads and a laptop is mandatory. These individual class guides will list material the students are expected have knowledge about coming in and software tools that need to be pre-installed before attending so you get the maximum benefit from the focused intermediate or advanced level course. Please pay particular attention to the prerequisites, as the material listed there will not be reviewed in the courses, and will be necessary to get the maximum benefit out of these educational programs.

Course Outline

This course is still in development. The specific hardware and software tools we will use are still being ironed out, but will fit into the overall outline:

Part 1: Mechanical

Note: Ideally all manufacturing will happen day 1. If there are issues, some boards/prints will be manufactured overnight. In case of critical issues, some reference designs will be available to continue day 2.

Part 2: Electrical

Part 3: Protocol

Part 4: Future Work

Who Should Take This Course:

Ripping open IOT devices to dump firmware and find debug testpoints is fun and effective, but everyone who tries this soon realizes that hastily soldering wires all over the place is unreliable. This course covers a series of techniques that enable you to quickly and reliably interface with all sorts of hardware devices, even when the manufacturer tries to make it difficult.

This course is specifically geared towards attendees who have some hardware hacking under their belt, but are interested in improving their ability to rig, retrofit, connect, and interpose wires into a system reliably and repeatably.


This two-day course assumes some experience: