IoT & Embedded Technology Blog

Security Requirements Driving Major Changes In Embedded Computing Ecosystem

In a strategically important move driven by significant changes in embedded computing, ETAS recently announced theirintent to acquire security solution provider ESCRYPT. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the modeling tool vendor confirmed that the acquisition is intended to strengthen the independent professional services division that they first established in January.
 
VDC’s View
 
Security has quickly emerged as the hot button issue within the embedded industry. As we’ve written about recently, the injection of connectivity requirements within many new device categories has left embedded engineering organizations recognizing a need for improved security, but often unsure of how best to harden their devices. 
 
The automotive sector serves as a perfect example of how the evolution of a device category – and the resulting increase in security risks - can challenge the traditional ecosystem and engineering cultures. We see four key factors contributing to a rapidly rising security risk in the auto industry, many of which are common to other industries as well:

  1. Cars are increasingly becoming Internet-enabled, in response to surging consumer demand for enhanced in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) and other new emerging applications.
  2. Additionally, the growing interconnectivity of the various electronic control units (ECU) within vehicles is now providing a pathway for threats to move from system to system.
  3. Automobile OEMs are generally siloed, with teams focused on the development of individual ECUs. As a result, insufficient attention is being given to the risk created by the interconnection of ECUs.
  4. Security is an entirely new problem for automobile OEMS that their existing engineering organizations have little or no experience addressing.

Similar trends can be found in virtually every industry, as OEMs race to develop next-generation products that leverage sensing, processing, I/O technologies, and connectivity to enable innovative new features and create entirely new revenue streams. And without any relevant expertise in security, we see the need for products and services such as those offered by ETAS/ESCRYPT as acute.

As we look broadly across the embedded technology landscape and the emerging Internet of Things, we see OEMs struggling with the issue of security, and vendors large and small aggressively trying to establish themselves as the leading security solution provider.  These include Intel through its McAfee acquisition, IBM with its reorganization and establishment of a security solutions division, Mocana with its focus on securing the Internet of Things, Wind River with its formation of a security-focused professional services team, and many, many others. 

With this market dynamic in mind, VDC has just announced a new research program dedicated to exploring this topic in greater depth. Our Voice of the Customer: Security & The Internet of Things program will provide OEMs, IT managers, and operators alike with the information that they need to develop and implement robust security strategies that can address the challenges posed by today’s Internet of Things. To learn more, please contact us


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