“We recognize that if the reality of a trillion connected devices is to be met, we need to build trust in those devices, and we need to make it easy for developers and OEMs to implement the right level of security for their use case,” said Chet Babla, VP of Arm’s emerging businesses group.
The Arm and Vodafone agreement builds on the two companies’ earlier partnership around integrated SIM (iSIM) technology. It combines Vodafone’s global network and IoT platform with Arm’s IoT software and services, and it aims to give enterprises programmable, connected system on chip (SoC) designs that eliminate the need for traditional SIM cards. This means companies will be able to securely deploy, remotely provision, and manage massive numbers of IoT devices across global markets at lower cost and with less complexity, said Charlene Marini, VP of strategy at Arm’s IoT Services Group.
“We’re bringing together Vodafone’s networking capabilities with Arm’s IoT platform, and we’re enabling zero-touch connectivity globally,” she said. “We see an opportunity and the need to enable lower-cost IoT, and we feel it’s important that there’s a simplification in the supply chain of devices to enable that.”
The partnership enables remote device provisioning using narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) and long-term evolution for machines (LTE-M) technologies, and it provides standards-based deployment to any application or service provider. It uses Arm’s Kigen iSIM technology to allow companies to develop and deploy a single IoT product that can be shipped and connected anywhere, and Vodafone’s global IoT network to connect these devices through the Vodafone IoT platform or Arm’s Pelion IoT platform.
These joint products and services will be available in the first quarter of calendar year 2020.
Arm also partnered with China Unicom on IoT in China. Under this deal China Unicom’s IoT platform will use Arm’s Pelion device management service and Arm’s Mbed operating system. The companies say this partnership will enable Chinese enterprises and foreign companies operating in China to deploy and manage IoT applications at scale across vertical including smart utility, cities, logistics, and others.
Mbed OS already integrates with IoT components and mainstream standards, and the next release, slated for availability in March, will comply with Arm’s new PSA safety certification.
PSA Certified IoT Testing
Arm announced PSA Certified at MWC this week. Under this new program Arm partnered with third-body testing labs Brightsight, CAICT, Riscure, and UL labs, along with consulting firm Prove&Run, to verify that devices are based on Arm’s Platform Security Architecture (PSA) framework and provide independent security certification.
The upcoming Mbed OS release will be one of the first operating systems to have out-of-the-box compliance with PSA Certified Level 1 and PSA functional API Certification with support for multiple semiconductor vendor hardware, including Cypress, Nuvoton, NXP Semiconductors, and ST.
The security testing is based on these third-party labs’ evaluations. It checks the generic parts of an IoT platform including: PSA Root of Trust, the real-time operating system (RTOS), and the device itself.
Is uses three levels of security assurance and requires different levels based on use cases — and the potential for harm that an insecure device poses. “A one size fits all approach doesn’t meet the threat,” Babla said. “This allows matching of the certification level to the needs of the use case.”
For example, a temperature sensor in a field may require different security robustness (level 1) than a sensor in a home environment (level 2) or in an industrial plant (level 3). After they’ve been tested, PSA Certified devices will have electronically signed report cards noting which level of security they achieved.
Some silicon and IoT platform providers have already earned level 1 certification. In addition to Arm Mbed OS, Cypress, Express Logic, Microchip, Nordic Semiconductor, Nuvoton, NXP, STMicroelectronics, and Silicon Labs have all achieved PSA Certified Level 1. Additionally, Nuvoton and OS provider Zaya earned both PSA Certified Level 1 and PSA Functional API Certification.