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A compact end cryptographic unit for tactical unmanned systems

Summary

Under the Navy's Flexible Cyber-Secure Radio (FlexCSR) program, the Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Lincoln Laboratory are jointly developing a unique cybersecurity solution for tactical unmanned systems (UxS): the FlexCSR Security/Cyber Module (SCM) End Cryptographic Unit (ECU). To deal with possible loss of unmanned systems that contain the device, the SCM ECU uses only publicly available Commercial National Security Algorithms and a Tactical Key Management system to generate and distribute onboard mission keys that are destroyed at mission completion or upon compromise. This also significantly reduces the logistic complexity traditionally involved with protection and loading of classified cryptographic keys. The SCM ECU is on track to be certified by the National Security Agency for protecting tactical data-in-transit up to Secret level. The FlexCSR SCM ECU is the first stand-alone cryptographic module that conforms to the United States Department of Defense (DoD) Joint Communications Architecture for Unmanned Systems, an initiative by the Office of the Secretary of Defense supporting the interoperability pillar of the DoD Unmanned Systems Integrated Roadmap. It is a credit card-sized enclosed unit that provides USB interfaces for plaintext and ciphertext, support for radio controls and management, and a software Application Programming Interface that together allow easy integration into tactical UxS communication systems. This paper gives an overview of the architecture, interfaces, usage, and development and approval schedule of the device.
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Summary

Under the Navy's Flexible Cyber-Secure Radio (FlexCSR) program, the Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Lincoln Laboratory are jointly developing a unique cybersecurity solution for tactical unmanned systems (UxS): the FlexCSR Security/Cyber Module (SCM) End Cryptographic Unit (ECU). To deal with possible loss of unmanned...

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Towards a universal CDAR device: a high performance adapter-based inline media encryptor

Summary

As the rate at which digital data is generated continues to grow, so does the need to ensure that data can be stored securely. The use of an NSA-certified Inline Media Encryptor (IME) is often required to protect classified data, as its security properties can be fully analyzed and certified with minimal coupling to the environment in which it is embedded. However, these devices are historically purpose-built and must often be redesigned and recertified for each target system. This tedious and costly (but necessary) process limits the ability for an information system architect to leverage advances made in storage technology. Our universal Classified Data At Rest (CDAR) architecture represents a modular approach to reduce this burden and maximize interface flexibility. The core module is designed around NVMe, a high-performance storage interface built directly on PCIe. Interfacing with non-NVMe interfaces such as SATA is achieved with adapters which are outside the certification boundary and therefore can be less costly and leverage rapidly evolving commercial technology. This work includes an analysis for both the functionality and security of this architecture. A prototype was developed with peak throughput of 23.9 Gb/s at a power consumption of 8.5W, making it suitable for a wide range of storage applications.
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Summary

As the rate at which digital data is generated continues to grow, so does the need to ensure that data can be stored securely. The use of an NSA-certified Inline Media Encryptor (IME) is often required to protect classified data, as its security properties can be fully analyzed and certified...

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Secure embedded systems

Published in:
Lincoln Laboratory Journal, Vol. 22, No. 1, 2016, pp. 110-22.

Summary

Developers seek to seamlessly integrate cyber security within U.S. military system software. However, added security components can impede a system's functionality. System developers need a well-defined approach for simultaneously designing functionality and cyber security. Lincoln Laboratory's secure embedded system co-design methodology uses a security coprocessor to cryptographically ensure system confidentiality and integrity while maintaining functionality.
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Summary

Developers seek to seamlessly integrate cyber security within U.S. military system software. However, added security components can impede a system's functionality. System developers need a well-defined approach for simultaneously designing functionality and cyber security. Lincoln Laboratory's secure embedded system co-design methodology uses a security coprocessor to cryptographically ensure system confidentiality...

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Secure architecture for embedded systems

Summary

Devices connected to the internet are increasingly the targets of deliberate and sophisticated attacks. Embedded system engineers tend to focus on well-defined functional capabilities rather than "obscure" security and resilience. However, "after-the-fact" system hardening could be prohibitively expensive or even impossible. The co-design of security and resilience with functionality has to overcome a major challenge; rarely can the security and resilience requirements be accurately identified when the design begins. This paper describes an embedded system architecture that decouples secure and functional design aspects.
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Summary

Devices connected to the internet are increasingly the targets of deliberate and sophisticated attacks. Embedded system engineers tend to focus on well-defined functional capabilities rather than "obscure" security and resilience. However, "after-the-fact" system hardening could be prohibitively expensive or even impossible. The co-design of security and resilience with functionality has...

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