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Difference between Hardware Security and Software Security

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1. Hardware Security :
Hardware Security, as the name suggests, is a type of security that protects the machine and peripheral hardware from harm. It also uses a dedicated IC (Integrated Circuit), specially designed to provide cryptographic functions and protect against attacks. It provides immunity from inherent vulnerabilities and security holes of the used OS.

2. Software Security :
Software Security, as the name suggests, is a type of security that protects software from harm. It is important to provide integrity, authentication, and availability. Generally, the software is considered the main source of security problems. It is the weakest link in the security chain with the possible exception of the human factor. Therefore, it is important to focus on software security.

Difference between Hardware Security and Software Security:

S. No.

Hardware Security

Software Security 

1. It is a process of protecting hardware against vulnerabilities that are targeting these devices. It is a process of protecting software against malicious attacks and other hackers’ risks.
2. It is simply required so that machines and peripheral hardware remain safe from theft or any electronic damage.  It is simply required so that software continues to function correctly under potential risks.  
3. Hardware is tougher to handle than software.   Software is easier is handle hardware because software can be updated frequently to deal with security vulnerabilities.  
4. Hardware cannot modify features just like software. Instead, one has to evaluate old hardware, identify the problem, formulate updates, coordinate with ecosystem partners and then push manufacturing for new build to fix the problem.   Software can easily modify features as one has to simply change code and push an update to fix problem. 
5. Hardware risks usually come from a specific or outdated piece of hardware.   Software risks usually come from a specific or outdated piece of software.  
6. Hardware risks are more prone to physical damage or crashes.   Software risks are more prone to viruses and system errors. 
7. It is more difficult and slower to patch hardware vulnerabilities as compared to software vulnerabilities.   It is less difficult and faster to patch software vulnerabilities as compared to hardware. 
8. Hardware vulnerability does not have an immediate impact on security but lives for decades as compared to software. Software vulnerability has a more immediate impact on security but is shorter-lived as compared to hardware.  
9. It is considered very effective in all application environments and especially those where end equipment is exposed and physically accessible to thefts.   It is considered effective in physically secure environments, preventing unauthorized access to the system.  
10. To complement software-based security and quickly apply and administer protections to your computing infrastructure, hardware-based security takes a multifaceted approach. This authority requires high firmware visibility, as well as assurance that workloads are operating on stable platforms. Encryption, operating system security, and network security are examples of software security for businesses.
11. Its main objective is to prevent loss, damage, and another compromise of information system assets simply to make sure that there are no interruptions of business activities and services.   Its main objective is to develop higher-quality, defect-free, and more robust software that normally continues to function properly and correctly even under malicious attacks. 


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Last Updated : 16 Jun, 2022
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