Intel, DARPA ink 3-year deal for custom, secure ASICs

DARPA and Intel said they will design custom chips that have security countermeasure technologies.

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Intel and DARPA outlined a three-year partnership to develop and manufacture Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) processors as nations scramble to make secure semiconductors domestically.

DARPA (U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and Intel said they will design custom chips that have security countermeasure technologies. The partnership is called Structured Array Hardware for Automatically Realized Applications (SAHARA).

With cybersecurity and nation-state threats becoming common issues, countries are looking to put more manufacturing within their borders and secure the supply chain. Intel is the only advanced semiconductor manufacturer in the US.

Under the partnership, Intel will supply its Intel eASIC structured ASIC technology with enhanced security. Defense and commercial electronics developers can then develop and deploy the processors. The chips are based on Intel's 10nm semiconductor process.

As for security, Intel will partner with the University of Florida, Texas A&M and University of Maryland to develop security countermeasure technologies. The aim is to bolster the protect data and intellectual property against reverse engineering and counterfeiting. The universities will test the security of the processors.

Last week, Intel and Microsoft said they have signed a deal to better secure data in cloud and virtual environments.