Enhanced security with hardware cryptography-enabled MCU

March 09, 2017 // By Graham Prophet
Microchip’s CEC1702 hardware cryptography-enabled microcontroller addresses the increasing need for security measures, such as secure boot, for connected applications. Offering a complete hardware cryptography-enabled solution in a single package, Microchip says it combines encryption, authentication, private and public key capabilities with programming flexibility. Yoiu can use it as a security coprocessor or standalone microcontroller.

CEC1702 is a full-featured ARM Cortex-M4-based microcontroller that provides performance improvements when compared to firmware-based solutions. The device’s hardware cryptographic cipher suite reduces compute time by orders of magnitude over software solutions by providing, for example, a 20-50x performance improvement for PKE acceleration as well as 100x improvement for encryption/decryption. This hardware-based feature set results in applications that can run security measures quickly, effectively and with significantly lower cost and power consumption.

 

CEC1702 delivers a multi-dimensional defence against attacks, including:

- Pre-boot authentication of system firmware: Providing an immutable identity and a root of trust to ensure that the firmware is untouched and has not been corrupted

- Firmware update authentication: Verifying that the firmware update has not been corrupted and is from a trusted source

- Authentication of system-critical commands: Attesting that any system-critical command is from a known source with authorisation to make the given change, preventing potentially devastating actions

- Protection of secrets with encryption: Safeguarding code and data to prevent theft or malicious activities

 

Microchip presents a full development suite including hardware and software tools as well as peripheral libraries and crypto Application Programme Interfaces (APIs) to accelerate design cycles.

 

Microchip; www.microchip.com/promo/CEC1702