The Titan M has been integrated into the boot process for the Pixel 3. The firmware on the Titan M can only be updated with a successful passcode attempt.
The most notable piece of information that seemingly flew under the radar amidst the plethora of leaks, is that Google is no longer working with LG to produce its displays. This prevents attackers from forcing the phone to roll back to a previous, less secure version of Android, and even unlock the bootloader without the user's knowledge.
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The Titan M's "secure flash and fully independent computation" harden the phone against attackers seeking to forcibly decrypt data stored on the handheld, we're told. Only once a passcode is verified, will it permit decryption.
Additionally, apps can use another API called Protected Confirmation to perform security-critical operations using Titan M. Google suggests applications like e-voting and P2P money transfers could utilize this API.
For the Titan M in the latest Pixel smartphones, Google explained on Wednesday, there's that same root of trust, ensuring the device starts up an operating system that hasn't been tampered with by malware or hackers, and is cryptographically signed off by Google. Finally, insider attack resistance prevents attackers from gaining access to the Titan M chip itself, through various security measures.
Overall, it's a significant investment in security for Google. What are your thoughts on Google's proactive approach to security?