Processor with Advanced Security
STMicroelectronics, a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, and the provider of Trusted Platform Modules (TPMs) to all major PC OEMs, has revealed the industry’s highest performing TPM enabling significantly stronger security and trust for activities like e-commerce and cloud-computing services.
As part of the Trusted Computing ecosystem, the TPM is a highly secure processor mounted on the computer motherboard to protect against threats such as software attacks or theft and tampering. It guards sensitive data such as keys, passwords and digital certificates, and provides trustworthy reports of system integrity. According to the Trusted Computing Group (TCG), the industry alliance promoting Trusted Computing technology, almost all enterprise PCs, servers and various embedded systems now have a TPM inside.
ST’s ST33TPM12LPC increases the strength of this hardware-based security as the first TPM to feature a 32-bit secure processor, surpassing existing standalone implementations. This allows the device to handle advanced cryptography algorithms and be ready to support the next-generation TPM 2.0 standard. The ST33TPM12LPC will not only achieve functional certification but also Common Criteria security certifications based on the TPM 1.2 latest Protection Profile at EAL4+ level thus fully complying with TPM Certification Program defined by the TCG.
In addition, ST will be proposing derived versions with other communication interfaces such as I2C and SPI to enable a range of devices besides desktops, notebooks, servers and network equipment to perform as trusted hardware. These include printers, copiers, mobile phones, tablets, home gateways, appliances, smart meters, industrial controls and automotive electronics.
The release of the ST33TPM12LPC is another demonstration of ST’s leading position in advanced process technology and security expertise. “ST is clearly committed to bringing today’s most powerful and compliant Trusted Platform Module not only to the PC industry but also to a virtually unlimited number of connected platforms,” said Marie-France Florentin, General Manager, Secure Microcontrollers Division at STMicroelectronics. “With ST having successfully supported TCG technology for years, this new product highlights our ability to take the lead and capitalize on our know-how and assets”.
The NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) promotes best practice in using the SHA-256 (Secure Hashing Algorithm version 2, 256Bit) algorithm. However, to date, the adoption in commercial markets has been much slower than originally anticipated. “The decision to use this algorithm within the TPM Root Certificate supports the longer term needs of tomorrow’s trustworthy computing environments and offers real value to users today in being able to meet the NIST requirements and accelerate the replacement of ageing SHA1 implementations”, said Steve Roylance, Business Development Director for GlobalSign Ltd, the certificate authority chosen by ST to certify the Endorsement Key within the TPM. “GlobalSign’s TPM Root certificate authority is one of a family of 2048bit RSA SHA-256 Certificates. Other roots have already been adopted by web browsers and operating system providers in a bid to push forward the NIST recommendations.”
Major features of ST33TPM12LPC:
- ARM® SC300 32-bit secure processor capable of supporting:
- SHA1 and SHA2 hash algorithms
- Ready for next generation TPM 2.0
- Embedded EK certificate root certified by independent Certification
- Authority (GlobalSign)
- Embedded 90nm non-volatile memory
- Low Pin-Count (LPC) interface
Samples of the ST33TPM12LPC are available in the TCG-recommended TSSOP28 4.4mm surface-mount package or a leadless QFN32 5 × 5mm lead-free Ecopack option. The ST33TPM12LPC will be in volume production in Q1 2012.