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Breaking KASLR on Mobile Devices without Any Use of Cache Memory
Authors: Milad Seddigh, Mahdi Esfahani, Sarani Bhattacharya, Mohammad Reza Aref, Hadi SoleimanyAbstract:
Microarchitectural attacks utilize the performance optimization constructs that have been studied over decades in computer architecture research and show the vulnerability of such optimizations in a realistic framework. One such highly performance driven vulnerable construct is speculative execution. In this paper, we focus on the problem of breaking the kernel address-space layout randomization (KASLR) on modern mobile devices without using cache memory as a medium of observation.
However, there are some challenges to breaking KASLR on ARM CPUs. The first challenge is that eviction strategies on ARM CPUs are slow, and the microarchitectural attacks exploiting the cache as a covert channel cannot be implemented on modern ARM CPUs. The second challenge is that non-canonical addresses are stored in the store buffer, although they are invalid. As a result, previous microarchitectural attacks distinguish such addresses as valid kernel addresses erroneously.
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