How do the Google Titan M2 and Tensor security cores work?


Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

Best answer: Titan is Google’s trademark for hardware-based security products, and with the Pixel 6 series it’s now a two-part setup. The Titan M2 is a discrete RISC-V security chip completely designed and developed by Google. It communicates with the new Google Tensor Security Core, which is a custom-designed security subsystem. Together, they are dedicated to preserving user privacy.

The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro use a new security chip named Titan M2. These aren’t the first Pixel phones to ship with hardware-based Titan security, but the chip has been completely redesigned.

The Titan M2 is developed and designed entirely in-house by Google. It is a RISC-V processor associated with its own memory to link security functions between several processor cores and threads. Its architecture alone has proven to be very resistant to attack.

The Titan M2 also supports Android Strongbox, which generates and securely stores the keys used to protect user passwords and PINs. The Titan M2 works hand in hand with the Google Tensor security kernel to protect user data keys when used in the SoC.

What is the Google Tensor Security Core?

Google Tensor Security Kernel is a custom-designed security subsystem. It is a true physical set of hardware consisting of a dedicated processor, ROM, Unique Programming Memory (OTP), encryption engine, internal SRAM, and a protected DRAM. The Tensor security kernel uses the open source Trusty TEE (Trusted Runtime Environment – think of it as an operating system).

In the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, the primary use cases for the Tensor Security Kernel are protecting user data keys while running, hardening the secure boot process, and interfacing with the Titan M2 chip every time. once your phone requests verification of credentials.

With these two hardware elements, the Pixel 6 is easily one of the most secure Android phones available. Because no action is required from the user (that’s you and me), the hardware can just do its job and keep our trusted credentials safe.

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