ARM gathers the best NFC and nano-SIM minds to coin a security solution for mobile chipsets

ARM gathers the best NFC and nano-SIM minds to coin a security solution for mobile chipsets
ARM has invited Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient to come up with the ultimate hardware-based security solution for our mobile devices. The result should be ARM's TrustZone embedded security, which has been present in its Cortex line of chip designs, bur brought up to speed with the modern times of NFC-enabled mobile payments and nano-SIM connection standards.

Gemalto is providing the secure network authentication in current SIM cards, and has working NFC solutions in mobile payments pilot programs - for more info read our dedicated article here. It got in the spotlight last year when Apple was allegedly asking for a programmable SIM card that will let you choose your carrier via an app and provide NFC payments functionality. The EU carriers went ballistic over the rumor and threatened to cut iPhone subsidies, so Apple eventually gave up on the idea.

Giesecke & Devrient sprang to fame recently as the company that made the nano-SIM card, and the subsequent ultimate fighting championship among Apple and EU carriers on one hand, and Nokia, RIM and Motorola at the other over the upcoming nano-SIM standard.

Read the full press release below for all the juicy details about how our smartphones and tablets will be kept from prying digital eyes in the future.


ARM, Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient Form Joint Venture To Deliver Next-Generation Security For Services Running On Connected Devices

03 April 2012

Industry leaders invest to accelerate adoption of a common security standard, creating a vibrant ecosystem that simplifies, improves and extends our digital lives

CAMBRIDGE, UK; AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS; & MUNICH, GERMANY - 3rd APRIL 2012- ARM, Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient today announced the creation of a joint venture dedicated to delivering a secure, accessible environment for advanced services running on the growing range of connected devices.

This includes tablets, smart-TVs, games consoles and smartphones. All three companies are investing to accelerate adoption of a common security standard and create a vibrant ecosystem that will enable a new generation of innovative services. Security is critical for companies that wish to do business over these types of connected devices and provide the rich, seamless services that consumers expect. With improved security, delivered in a way that is easy to use, consumers will engage with a greater level of trust in the devices and services available.

The joint venture, which is subject to regulatory approval, will provide a secure environment for a new wave of advanced services to flourish, based on easy to use, accessible and consistent device security. Technology developed by the joint venture will be based on established solutions from the founding companies. It will provide a practical solution for manufacturers to deliver devices that enable services with a new level of trust. This trust will mean that consumers are able to simplify, improve and extend their digital lives. Faster, more secure and richer access to the services they want will then be possible, wherever and whenever they want it.

Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient are both leading companies and long-standing ARM partners that offer security solutions to governments and for the financial and mobile industries. Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient have agreed to contribute their respective software expertise to the joint venture. This will accelerate standardization and interoperability, based on industry standards, to ensure that existing customer investments are future-proofed. All three companies will contribute assets to the new venture, including patents, software, people, cash and capital equipment. ARM will own 40% of the joint venture, with Gemalto and Giesecke & Devrient each owning 30%.

Secure, Accessible Environmentfor Smart Connected Devices The new venture will focus on improving security for smart connected devices by developing a Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) based on the established ARM® TrustZone® security technology. This common, secure environment for software execution will utilize advanced hardware security coupled with industry standard software interfaces, such as those from the GlobalPlatform industry association. By providing this secure environment for multiple silicon, software and device manufacturing partners, the joint venture will enable greater operational efficiency across the ecosystem and the industry as a whole.

Devices with a TEE will provide consumers with more secure, user-friendly experiences that simplify and speed up how they interact with their digital world. This will enable them to use their smart, connected devices more frequently to access an increasing range of applications and services in a secure way. This includes mobile payment, enterprise productivity and mobile banking applications, as well as online commerce and premium content services.

"The integration of the hardware, software and services necessary for system-wide security has been slow," said Warren East, CEO, ARM. "I am confident that this new joint venture will accelerate the adoption of a common security standard, enabling a vibrant ecosystem of secure service providers to emerge. This will be of significant step in terms of improved consumer trust in secure transactions on connected devices."

"Gemalto has been an early mover in developing its software and servicing capabilities to remotely manage sensitive data for different security implementations on connected devices, and we are excited to be part of this new venture that will pave the way for accelerating the adoption of a Trusted Execution Environment utilizing ARM TrustZone technology," said Olivier Piou, CEO of Gemalto. "Our combined efforts will result in the ecosystem as a whole being able to capitalize on the built-in security architectures, especially for transient data such as encryption keys for digital movie rentals, and reduce uncertainties for service providers wanting to launch and manage new services."

"Giesecke & Devrient were the first to establish, with Mobicore, a Trusted Execution Environment that can be securely managed over the air. It allows mass market development of an open, trusted application environment and is complementary to the existing secure elements offered on the basis of smart card technology. Through our mobile security OS software Mobicore we became trusted partners to some of the biggest semiconductor companies and device manufacturers," said Karsten Ottenberg, CEO of Giesecke & Devrient. "The new venture unites the leading players in Trusted Execution Environments and will accelerate the market for secured services."

"ARM integrates its TrustZone architecture into every ARM Cortex™-A family processor to help our silicon partners deliver the deepest level of security in their hardware," said Ben Cade, CEO of the new venture. "The new venture will combine the security operations from three leading organizations. This will provide a trusted software environment capable of utilizing security from the hardware level up, in a consistent, open and accessible manner. This will pave the way for service providers to innovate advanced, trusted services that will enhance user experiences whilst also reducing risks and improving privacy."

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