101 Ways to Brick your Hardware

Presented at DEF CON 24 (2016), Aug. 5, 2016, 4 p.m. (60 minutes)

Spend some time hacking hardware and you'll eventually render a piece of equipment unusable either by accident or intentionally. Between us, we've got decades of bricking experience that we'd like to share. We'll document the most common ways of temporarily or permanently damaging your hardware and ways to recover, if possible. We'll also talk about tips on how to avoid bricking your projects in the first place. If you're getting into hardware hacking and worried about messing something up, our stories will hopefully prevent you from experiencing the same horrors we did. If you're worried about an uprising of intelligent machines, the techniques discussed will help you disable their functionality and keep them down.


  • Joe Grand / Kingpin - Grand Idea Studio   as Joe Grand (Kingpin)
    Joe Grand also known as Kingpin, is a computer engineer, hardware hacker, former DEF CON badge designer, runner, daddy, honorary doctor, TV host, member of L0pht Heavy Industries, and the proprietor of Grand Idea Studio. Twitter: @joegrand
  • Joe FitzPatrick / @securelyfitz as Joe FitzPatrick
    Joe FitzPatrick is an Instructor and Researcher at https://SecuringHardware.com. Joe has spent over a decade working on low-level silicon debug, security validation, and hardware penetration testing, and hardware security training. In between training and bricking hardware, Joe is busy developing new course content or working on contributions to the NSA Playset and other misdirected hardware projects. Twitter: @securelyfitz