Easing the Pain of IoT Cybercrimes
John Koon posted on September 11, 2020 |
Silicon Labs introduces new PSA Certified Level 2 SoC.
(Image courtesy of Silicon Labs.)
(Image courtesy of Silicon Labs.)

According to design consultancy Eseye, IoT connection endpoints reached 9 billion in 2020. Unfortunately, IoT cyberattacks also increased by 300 per cent in 2019. Hackers are looking for system design vulnerability to attack networks. Some of the threats include botnets, denial of service, and data theft. The attacks will only get worse.

To help fight the battle, Silicon Labs, a silicon and software solutions provider, has introduced the EFR32MG21B, the first radio to attain PSA Certified Level 2 certification. The EFR32MG21 device is an Arm-based multiprotocol 2.4 GHz wireless SoC. Its RF design delivers -104 dBm sensitivity for both 802.15.4 and Bluetooth Long Range with up to +20 dBm output power. Target applications include smart lighting, gateways, voice assistants, and smart metering using line-powered Zigbee, Thread, or Bluetooth mesh.

(Image courtesy of Silicon Labs.)

(Image courtesy of Silicon Labs.)

“From tiny low-power sensors to high-performance IoT devices, security must be built in at the chip level to ensure a strong foundation,” said Andy Rose, chief system architect and fellow at Arm. “Silicon Labs understands the importance of this, and by achieving PSA Certified Level 2, their customers can be assured of robust protection against scalable software attacks, enabling secure SoCs for mass market IoT deployment.”

According to Silicon Labs, its Secure Vault technologies using physically unclonable function (PUF) technology is much more secure than comparable products on the market. Most solutions rely on secure boot based and/or hardware root of trust only. 

Silicon Labs’ Secure Vault is a suite of security features that go beyond what other solutions offer. These features include secure attestation, secure key management, secure key storage, and advanced crypto. Additionally, the Secure Vault subsystem uses its own ROM, RAM, and Flash to support the core crypto algorithms.

(Image courtesy of Silicon Labs.)
(Image courtesy of Silicon Labs.)

The Silicon Labs’ Secure Vault subsystem, based on the EFR32MG21B, is a suite of additional security features including secure attestation, secure key management, secure key storage, and advanced crypto. The subsystem uses its own ROM, RAM, and Flash to support the core crypto algorithms. 

 “Threats are continuously evolving, and the demands on IoT product developers to keep up can be difficult – particularly in low cost, resource-constrained IoT products,” said Matt Johnson, senior vice president of IoT at Silicon Labs. “Securing IoT products in our connected world is a necessity as customer data, and cloud-based business models are increasingly targeted for costly hacks, and IoT security requirements are quickly becoming law. Silicon Labs is committed to working with the security community, customers, and third-party security experts to deliver state-of-the-art security solutions that help protect connected IoT devices today and tomorrow.” 

Finally, Silicon Labs provides the xG22 Thunderboard and EFR32MG21B development kits with SmartCert security certification status from the ioXt Alliance. Using the development kits along with Simplicity Studio 5 development tools, SDKs, mobile apps, and Silicon Labs’ patented network analyzer, developers will be able to shorten both development and certification time.

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