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Join the cyber security forums at electronica 2020

30th October 2020
Joe Bush

At electronica virtual 2020, Electronic Specifier will be holding a digital forum programme on cyber security as part of the trade fair on 11th and 12th November, from 14:00 to 17:00. These will focus on embedded systems, healthcare, IoT and the automotive industry.

Issues around cyber security have proliferated every sector of industry, exacerbated by the uncertainty of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Some highlights from the upcoming cyber security forums at electronica include Steven Dean from ON Semiconductor who will look at the security issues thrown up within the medical space.


Opportunities for IoT to revolutionise healthcare have recently exploded. COVID-19 and the need for patients to recover in place has provided remote patient monitoring that shot-in-the-arm it’s been looking for. Increased connectivity between devices and medical services are producing unprecedented quantities of patient data.

This large and new connected world in the medical device space provides not only the potential of increased patient risk in terms of safety and security issues, but for the healthcare community overall. There have been some very public examples of successful cyber security attacks, and Steve’s presentation will explore those industry events and trends, as well as some system level technology helping to secure connected medical devices.


With more and more networking functionality like Bluetooth, 3G, 4G, LTE, etc. added to vehicles each year, the attack surfaces continue to grow. This will continue to dramatically increase as we move to the autonomous vehicle. But are they connected with a foundation of security in mind? Connected vehicles form networks and provide access to in-vehicle networks which are exposed to many forms of attack. Such attacks are real and well documented in the media, resulting in damage to manufacturer brand reputation and direct revenue impact due to recalls.

As part of our Cyber Security forum on Automotive, Todd Slack from Microchip Technology’s Secure Products Group will demonstrate a practical methodology of securing automotive in vehicle networking against such threats using hardware-based companion security solutions. He will examine the types of threats and potential attack surfaces in the network and how to protect against such threats.


To meet the security and cryptography requirements of IoT devices or embedded systems, designers have multiple implementation choices. For example, consider an IoT device that is operated from a system microcontroller that does not integrate hardware (HW) security functions nor secure storage for keys/secrets. Cryptography could be implemented in software with this micro, but if there is risk that the device will be reverse-engineered or attacked in an effort to break the security, it would be relatively easy to compromise. 

An alternative with this same microcontroller would be to utilise an externally attached dedicated hardware-based secure authenticator IC that provides a turn-key crypto toolbox suitable for the application and secure storage of sensitive data such as keys. Another strong option would be to use a secure microcontroller which integrates hardware-based security to both control the IoT device and to securely implement the cryptographic requirements. As part of our Embedded session Stéphane Di Vito, a product definer and security expert for Maxim Integrated’s Micros Security and Software Business Unit, will discuss the benefits of both hardware-based solutions.


It is predicted that by 2021 there will be over 11 billion connected devices worldwide, with that figure predicted to nearly double by 2025. Therefore, securing the IoT is going to be a daunting challenge moving forward.

However, Silicon Labs’ Sharon Hagi will detail how security threats have changed and escalated, focusing more than ever on IoT. In addition, recent regulations like GDPR in Europe and SB-327 in California protect vulnerable data and privacy by placing more pressure on manufacturers to step up security best practices, such as security certifications for IoT devices. Sharon will explain how the latest IoT device security tools are helping to protect devices and data and ensure regulatory compliance.

A full agenda can be viewed below

Day 1: 11th November

Day 2: 12th November

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