embedded world: Maxim unveils secure IoT microcontroller
At embedded world 2020, Maxim Integrated introduced a secure Arm Cortex-M4 microcontroller with built-in physically unclonable function (PUF) technology for financial- and government-grade security.
The PUF technology allows for multiple layers of protection to provide the most advanced key-protection technology in a cost-effective format for use in IoT, healthcare, industrial and computing systems. As IoT applications continue to proliferate, large numbers of devices are being deployed in uncontrolled and hostile areas that make them more vulnerable to physical attacks. These are more sophisticated than software threats like poor crypto implementations or default password attacks. Designers want enhanced system defenses for their mission-critical applications where exposing secret encryption keys can bring down networks, ruin reputations, end companies and even negatively affect people’s lives. The MAX32520 with ChipDNA offers multiple layers of protection through its PUF technology, the industry’s most advanced key-protection technology for safeguarding secrets used in cryptographic operations.
It uses a tamper-proof PUF key for flash encryption, secure boot for root-of-trust and serial flash emulation.
Additionally, the physical security inherent in the PUF key eliminates the need for a battery to actively destroy secret-key materials when under attack.
Until now, the most-sensitive applications have always required a battery to provide this highest level of secret-key protection. The MAX32520 is tamper-proof through secret keys generated by the ChipDNA PUF circuitry which are highly resistant to physical attacks, ensuring the keys that protect data and systems are out of the reach of attackers.
Flash-encryption using PUF protects sensitive information with encryption keys that withstand even advanced physical inspection and prying, as well as providing robust IP security.
The DeepCover secure microcontroller can protect all user data, as it is equipped with SP 800-90A and SP 800-90B compliant TRNG and hardware accelerators for AES-256, ECDSA P-521 and SHA-512.
It delivers up to 2MB of secure flash memory, enabling advanced applications to run in a highly secure environment, and because it is built on an advanced process node, this secure microcontroller provides advanced security features, a 120 MHz ARM Cortex M4 processor and plenty of memory.
It eliminates several components like a battery, a tamper monitor IC and system management micros that are often found in security-sensitive applications. “The threats to IoT systems are getting more advanced all the time, and tools to attack systems move from the realm of academia to the realm of open source every day,” said Kris Ardis, executive director, Micros, Security and Software Business Unit at Maxim Integrated. “MAX32520 with ChipDNA is a step forward. Built around the most advanced key security technology and targeting IoT applications, it will protect your data and IP, and has the technology to future-proof designs against tomorrow’s system thre