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I want to add noise to some signal. I have the option to add the noise via the software API of the system. But I also have the option to add the noise in the hardware circuit itself so there is no need to manipulate the software layer.

What would be the pros and cons of each approach? The noise is meant to hide some information that I dont want people to easily see in the signal.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ With what you shared it is difficult if not impossible to help you. Try to add some details if you want some meaningful insights. \$\endgroup\$ – Vladimir Cravero Oct 11 '16 at 21:48
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Definitely need more details about the type of information, and how it might be vulnerable to uninvited observability. Assuming it's some type of n-bit bus, my first thought is that you should encrypt the data, using a secret key code, so only someone with the key code can decrypt and recover the original data.

Noise, as an engineering term, is random and unpredictable, requiring a denoising filter/algorithm to obtain something close to the original data. Rarely can you recover all of the original data.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Example: I have a device that measures the temperature every few minutes. But I want it to report a distorted value of temperature; not the exact value it measures. So, I want to inject noise into the temperature values so a random guy seeing the output cannot get the correct value. However, I can still see what I want (e.g., the trend in temperature rise/fall) even if the signal has noise added to it. Can I reliably do this in hardware? \$\endgroup\$ – Minaj Oct 12 '16 at 6:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ I see. You want to add noise and maintain a moving average of the distorted signal. I would do this with SW. The only reason to implement anything in hardware is for computational speed. With the very low sample rate of temp monitoring, doing your work in the SW allows far more flexibility and debug-ability. \$\endgroup\$ – BHook Oct 12 '16 at 14:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks; so speed is one point. What of security? -- Wouldnt a person who wants to discover the exact behavior of my system find it easier to "hack" the software system than the hardware system? \$\endgroup\$ – Minaj Oct 12 '16 at 15:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Security is a systemic issue. HW and SW are interdependent; one can't be hacked without an understanding of the other. \$\endgroup\$ – BHook Oct 12 '16 at 18:38

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