Survey on Architectural Attacks: A Unified Classification and Attack Model

Tara Ghasempouri, Jaan Raik, Cezar Reinbrecht, Said Hamdioui, Mottaqiallah Taouil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


According to the World Economic Forum, cyberattacks are considered as one of the most important sources of risk to companies and institutions worldwide. Attacks can target the network, software, and/or hardware. Over the years, much knowledge has been developed to understand and mitigate cyberattacks. However, new threats have appeared in recent years regarding software attacks that exploit hardware vulnerabilities. This article defines these attacks as architectural attacks. Today, both industry and academia have only limited comprehension of architectural attacks, which represents a critical issue for the design of future systems. To this end, this work proposes a new taxonomy, a new attack model, and a complete survey of existing architectural attacks. As a result, it provides the tools to understand architectural attacks in more depth and to start building improved designs and protection mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish
Article number42
Number of pages32
JournalACM Computing Surveys
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Architectural attacks
  • attack model
  • data attacks
  • functionality attacks
  • IP attacks


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