The Stack Archive

Blackberry establishes new security measures for IoT devices

Wed 22 Apr 2015


Blackberry subsidiary Certicom has announced the launch of a new managed public key infrastructure (M-PKI) solution to help secure millions of connected devices, such as smart cars and wearables, as part of its Internet of Things (IoT) strategy.

According to the public key infrastructure specialists, the new package will allow businesses to better verify and secure their IoT products. The company also said that it has begun issuing certificates for next-generation gas and electricity meters under the UK’s household smart meters initiative. The scheme hopes to cover around 104 million energy monitoring devices across the country.

Blackberry has also revealed a separate CHACE (Center for High Assurance Computing Excellence) programme which seeks to support research and development projects in global computer and IoT security.

With a rapidly growing IoT sector, industry experts have warned that increased security threats will ensue. In response to this companies are rushing to upgrade their security systems, from existing reactive-based models to new proactive measures in a bid to block cyberattacks.

Blackberry chief security officer David Kleidermacher explained that the CHACE initiative would work to support innovation in security protection and help improve current standards.

“There’s a belief that the key to the world’s security issues is to patch faster, but this hamster wheel fails to address the root issue,” he said.

“Systems that require regular patching always contain vulnerabilities unknown to developers, and some of these vulnerabilities are in fact known by would-be attackers. It’s clear we must build systems that are provably devoid of security flaws. CHACE is BlackBerry’s initiative towards this goal, and we welcome all who wish to join the fight.”

Educational groups and several industry organisations have already agreed to work alongside Blackberry on its CHACE initiative.

Healthcare is one of the major sectors where Blackberry and CHACE plan to make a difference, addressing security concerns surrounding connected health devices and wireless medical equipment. The Diabetes Technology Society (DTS) has announced that it will be collaborating with Blackberry to establish security processes for systems used in the treatment of diabetes patients and sufferers of related conditions.

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