Password Protect™

Secure Password Authentication Appliance

Password Protect solves the problem of bulk identity theft by replacing your existing password database, that is vulnerable to attack by hackers, with an impenetrable hardware authentication appliance.

Login credentials received by your service are sent to a Password Protect appliance for validation. Password Protect is available both as a cloud service and for deployment in your own data centre.


Easy Integration

Integration with your existing authentication code is straightforward. Instead of validating identities and passwords using a database in your network, you send them to Password Protect for validation. Our migration tools make light work of moving existing credentials into Password Protect, without the need to reset passwords.

Secure and Reliable

Each Password Protect authentication appliance can store millions of login credentials and authenticate thousands of users per minute. Appliances have disaster recovery and high availability features built in, and can be clustered for scalability, load balancing and failover including geographical redundancy.

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Our Solution: Password Protect™

No-Read™ Authentication Appliance

With Password Protect we have developed an inpenetrable password storage and authentication appliance. It is based on our radical new patented No-Read™ platform, and prevents data theft by adopting the following protection strategies:

No-Read – You set a password against a username and can verify those two credentials together, but you cannot read a password or username out of the Password Protect appliance. Only verification results leave the device, never the password itself. There are no back-doors and no administrator password overrides.

No-Malware – Password Protect does not execute external programs. This makes it immune to all types of malware infection, buffer overflow attacks, cross-site scripting attacks and SQL injection attacks. In fact any code injection attack is impossible.

No-PC or OS – Password Protect is not a PC and doesn’t run an operating system, database or conventional software stack. This reduces the ‘attack surface’ and provides immunity against thousands of vulnerabilities associated with the PC platform. Neither does Password Protect rely on encryption and user privileges to keep data safe.

In order to do this Silicon:SAFE has gone beyond the use of cryptographic and operating system based solutions and developed a hardware password store, a no-read appliance that physically encapsulates password data. Once password data is entered into the appliance, it cannot be read out again.

You can think of the Password Protect appliance as the hardware implementation of principles behind the use of hashing and shadow files. Once password data is created then it never needs to be read again. But instead it is used as reference data to compare against password ‘guesses’.

The Password Protect appliance stores username/password pairs so that once a pair is registered in the hardware it is impossible to read the password out from the hardware by remote access. To verify that a user has a particular password you must ask the hardware to test a username/password pair against what is stored and the hardware will return a YES or NO answer. With no interface for the hardware to divulge passwords, you cannot ask the hardware what a password is for “Customer X”, or request a dump of the password file. So, if you want to get the password file out of the hardware you have to physically tamper with the box.

This raises an important question: how is backup performed if you can’t get the passwords out of the appliance? The solution is to replicate changes between appliances. When a username/password pair is added or changed to one appliance it immediately replicates the changes to other ‘backup’ appliances on a private network link. As a consequence of this approach there is no need for a bulk transfer of passwords between appliances, nor is it necessary or possible to dump the password repository to backup media where it is vulnerable to theft.

The solution is to store data directly in the silicon. So Password Protect does not rely on passwords being hashed or encrypted. Nor does it utilise an operating system that can be flawed by vulnerabilities, and it does not rely on a key management system. It is immune to social engineering attacks because there are no administrator passwords or other mechanism susceptible to human error.

Solving The Problem Of Bulk Identity Theft

Because you cannot read credentials from Password Protect or re-program it with malware to implement a backdoor read interface, its impossible to steal login credentials from a Password Protect appliance during a cyber-attack, eradicating the menace of bulk password theft.

If Adobe, eBay or Ashley Madison had used Password Protect, then data breaches comprising millions of login credentials would never have happened.