Overview

This two-day comprehensive course, from the world renown hardware hacker Joe Grande, teaches fundamental hardware hacking concepts and techniques used to reverse engineer and defeat the security of electronic devices.

Combining lecture and hands-on exercises, it provides students with the skills, resources, and confidence needed to explore, manipulate, and exploit electronic systems. This course only available as a private class, taught virtually or in-person, minimum participation 12 learners.

Learners will be provided with the following course materials:

  • Grand Idea Studio’s custom training circuit board (one for each student to keep)
  • Lecture slides (in electronic format)
  • Hardware hacking reference material and software tools (in electronic format)
  • Hardware hacking equipment, including soldering iron, multi-meter, logic analyser, and device programmer.

Additional advanced hardware hacking courses are available upon request for private delivery, for 12 minimum participants.

  • Firmware Extraction and Manipulation
  • Defeating Microcontroller Code Protection
  • Hardware Implants and Espionage
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Prerequisites

No prior hardware experience is required.

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Delegates will learn how to

  • Describe and understand the hardware hacking process, mindset, and purpose
  • Hands-on experience with useful and relevant techniques
  • Confidence to apply learned skills to electronic systems outside the classroom
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Outline

Module 1 - Hardware Hacking Overview

  • Overview of hardware hacking

Module 2 - Information Gathering

  • How to gather information before you start hardware hacking

Module 3 - Product Teardown

Opening housings

  • Product assembly/disassembly methods
  • Anti-tamper mechanisms
  • Hands-on exercise: Defeat epoxy encapsulation

Component identification

  • Discrete components
  • Integrated circuits
  • Finding and reading data sheets
  • Hands-on exercise: Identify target components

Module 4 - Schematics and PCBs (Printed Circuit Boards)

  • Creating/reading schematics
  • PCB construction/fabrication methods
  • Hands-on exercise: Modify target PCB

Module 5 - Soldering and Desoldering

  • Tips/techniques
  • Hands-on exercise: Soldering
  • Hands-on exercise: Desoldering

Module 6 - Buses and Interfaces

Identifying interfaces

Determining pin function

  • Hands-on exercise: Measurements w/ multi-meter
  • Hands-on exercise: Create block diagram/schematic

Signal monitoring and analysis

  • Tools/techniques
  • Serial communications interfaces (UART, I2C, SPI)
  • Hands-on exercise: Signal monitoring w/ logic analyser
  • Hands-on exercise: Digital decoding w/ logic analyser
  • Hands-on exercise: Interactive console via UART

Module 7 - Signal/Data Manipulation

  • Tools/techniques/examples
  • Debug interfaces (vendor-specific, JTAG)
  • Fault injection/glitching overview

Module 8 - Memory and Firmware

  • Memory types
  • Hands-on exercise: Extract/modify data from EEPROM
  • Security/code protection bypass examples
  • Firmware analysis tools/techniques

Module 9 - Hardware Hacking Challenge

Apply the knowledge and skills learned in the course to defeat the security mechanism of a custom electronic device.

Testimonials

ANONYMOUS

This was one of the best training classes I have ever been to. The instructor’s emphasis on design philosophies and systematic deconstruction provided me with a clear hacking flowchart.

ANONYMOUS

Joe Grand’s passion, enthusiasm, and command of the class is inspiring in itself.

ANONYMOUS

Outstanding course. Joe was a great instructor and made the course very friendly, informative and enjoyable!

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QA are proud to be the UK partner for Grand Idea Studio

Cyber Security learning paths

Want to boost your career in cyber security? Click on the roles below to see QA's learning pathways, specially designed to give you the skills to succeed.

Required Star = Required
Certification = Certification
Application Security
Cloud Security
Information Security Management
Security Risk
Cyber Tech Generalist
DFIR Digital Forensics & Incident Response
Industrial Controls & OT Security
NIST Pathway
OffSec
Privacy Professional
Security Auditor
Secure Coding
Cyber Blue Team
Vulnerability Assessment & Penetration Testing
AI Security
Reverse Engineer
Security Architect

Offensive Cyber Operations learning paths

Want to boost your career in the world of Offensive Cyber Operations? View QA's learning pathway below, specially designed to give you the skills to succeed.

Required Star = Required
Certification = Certification
OffSec
Vulnerability Assessment & Penetration Testing
Reverse Engineer

Frequently asked questions

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If you have been booked onto a course by your company, you will receive a confirmation email. From this email, select "Sign into myQA" and you will be taken to the "Create account" page. Complete all of the details and select "Create account".

If you have the booking number you can also go here and select the "I have a booking number" option. Enter the booking reference and your surname. If the details match, you will be taken to the "Create account" page from where you can enter your details and confirm your account.

Find more answers to frequently asked questions in our FAQs: Bookings & Cancellations page.

How do QA’s virtual classroom courses work?

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We use the WebEx video conferencing platform by Cisco. Before you book, check that you meet the WebEx system requirements and run a test meeting (more details in the link below) to ensure the software is compatible with your firewall settings. If it doesn’t work, try adjusting your settings or contact your IT department about permitting the website.

Learn more about our Virtual Classrooms.

How do QA’s online courses work?

QA online courses, also commonly known as distance learning courses or elearning courses, take the form of interactive software designed for individual learning, but you will also have access to full support from our subject-matter experts for the duration of your course. When you book a QA online learning course you will receive immediate access to it through our e-learning platform and you can start to learn straight away, from any compatible device. Access to the online learning platform is valid for one year from the booking date.

All courses are built around case studies and presented in an engaging format, which includes storytelling elements, video, audio and humour. Every case study is supported by sample documents and a collection of Knowledge Nuggets that provide more in-depth detail on the wider processes.

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When will I receive my joining instructions?

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When will I receive my certificate?

Certificates of Achievement are issued at the end the course, either as a hard copy or via email. Read more here.

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