In today’s world, security is a huge concern for our global society. Whether boarding a plane, closing the front door, or beginning your next generation circuit design, security has become a significant issue. In our homes, we try to build in the right amount of security to protect ourselves against theft. Security is rapidly becoming a necessity in the electronics industry as well. It is important to understand why security issues have escalated to the forefront in the electronics design field. One reason is the alarming amount of counterfeited goods that are the result of theft. These goods threaten the economy and have a significant effect worldwide in the consumer markets according to the Anti-counterfeiting Coalition. This white paper identifies the top design security threats, explores the basic levels of security, and describes how new, low-cost Spartan-3A, Spartan-3AN, and Spartan-3A DSP FPGAs from Xilinx can help protect your products and profits.