Introducing PCBRE: An open source PCB reverse-engineering suite

Presented at REcon 2015, June 20, 2015, 1 p.m. (60 minutes)

PCB Reverse engineering is the process of taking a physical Printed Circuit Board, extracting the electrical connectivity between components, and analyzing the overall circuit to understand function. This can be - and often is - done by a dedicated person equipped with a multimeter, or by abusing Photoshop, GIMP or Inkscape. These techniques are error prone and tedious, and take far longer than one wants! This talk introduces the creatively-named PCBRE toolsuite, an open-source integrated software package for automation of certain PCB Reverse Engineering tasks. This talk will cover the tool itself, the techniques in use within the tool, and what you as a reverser can use the software for. In addition, this talk will cover a number of related areas: - reverse-engineering for different goals (firmware extraction, security analysis, preservation, re-engineering) - reversing complex systems in a time and cost effective manner - assessing security properties of complex systems from a hardware perspective - how to acquire high-quality images of printed circuit boards To wrap up, I will demo PCBRE on a piece (or two, time allowing) of *mystery* hardware to illustrate how software like this can help you go after real systems.



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