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One chip adds security to IoT end nodes


Called MAX36010 and MAX36011, “these make it easier for designers to implement robust tamper detection, cryptography and secure storage while safeguarding sensitive information via logical and physical protections, without having to be security experts themselves – that can be integrated into a design at any stage of development,” said the firm.

The supervisors generate keys via a true random number generator (TRNG), and the keys are then stored in battery-backed RAM along with certificates and other sensitive data. This data is erased when tampering is detected – a capability that meets the requirements of Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) Publication 140-2 at its highest security levels (Levels 3 and 4), according to Maxim.

Both symmetric and asymmetric cryptographic functions are supported, such as Data Encryption Standard (3DES), AES, Rivest, Shamir, Adleman (RSA) and ECDSA (elliptic curve digital signature algorithm).

They are designed and compliant to the requirements of Payment Card Industry (PCI) and FIPS140-2 certifications.

MAX36010 supports symmetric key generation for AES and 3DES.

MAX36011 supports both symmetric and asymmetric key generations for AES, 3DES, RSA and ECDSA.

Alongside the random number generator are temperature and voltage sensors, 1kbyte of secure storage, dynamic tamper sensing and a real-time clock (RTC), plus an SHA (secure hash algorithm) hardware engine.

Host interfaces include SPI, UART and I2C. “No firmware development is required to connect to the host processor,” according to the firm.

“IoT devices have now become commonplace in consumer households, which store personal and sensitive data related to the user’s day-to-day activities,” said Maxim product definer Stella Or. “While IoT designers have security top of mind, they are not always experts in this area. Many customers find that MAX36010 and MAX36011 fulfil their security requirements, especially customers looking to design devices that offer FIPS140-2 certification.”

MAX36010EVKIT is an evaluation kit.