Hardware and software security measures for embedded computers

5th July 2017
Source: Kontron AG
Posted By : Enaie Azambuja
Hardware and software security measures for embedded computers

Kontron has announced numerous new security services available on its VPX and VME boards and systems, as well as on its TRACe computer family. Addressing increasing security requirements for safety-critical applications, Kontron Secure Embedded Computing (SEC-Line) consists of four security modules, Kontron APPROTECT, Secure Boot, Trusted Boot and Authentication with TPM, implementing hardware enforced root of trust, as well as software only techniques.

Based on a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) secure element, Kontron Trusted Boot protects the system during boot, detecting any tampering attempts. Secure Boot will only boot signed software from the BIOS firmware, so that only verified and signed code is executed, safeguarding against malicious alterations to the boot loader. Authentication with TPM is used to authenticate the system hardware during communication thus enabling secure network protocols such as SSL/TLS.

Kontron's proven Security Solution APPROTECT ensures the application's integrity utilising an additional security chip in combination with a dedicated software framework. Kontron APPROTECT encrypts an application's source code in a way that makes reverse engineering impossible (IP Protection/Reverse Engineering Protection).

The integrated security chip constantly checks the application encryption to make sure it is only run on the intended devices (Copy Protection). At the same time, its integrity is monitored and protected to prevent the execution of manipulated applications.

"Digital security implemented through hardware root of trust is extremely important for embedded computing," said Serge Tissot, Technical Strategy Manager at Kontron. "With an increasing number of autonomous devices deployed in the field, with no operator close by, the potential for attacks on these systems increases significantly. Kontron's SEC-Line offers a comprehensive approach to security with both hardware- and software-based solutions".

In addition to the Kontron SEC-Line, the company offers the necessary in-house services compliant with the ISO 27000 standard for the encryption of application software and the management of security certificates.

Kontron leverages years of experience in developing embedded computing for safety critical applications in transportation, aerospace, and defense. Its security solutions are likewise suitable for applications in the automotive, industrial, and energy sectors.

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