Philips to gain world’s first EAL 5 + Common Criteria certification for a 16-bit smart card controller IC
Developers of secure smart card-based applications set to benefit from Philips’ leading security expertise
Eindhoven, The Netherlands, 24 June 2003–Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI), today announced that following independent evaluation, it has been awarded the world’s first Common Criteria EAL5+ certification for a true 16-bit smart card controller IC. Presented by the German Federal Office for Information Security–Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik (BSI)–this latest certification adds further weight to the leading role that Philips is playing in the development of security for smart card chip solutions.
Philips, which was the first semiconductor company to introduce a 16-bit architecture to the smart card market, was presented with the award after evaluation of its SmartXA2 semiconductor chip by T-Systems GEI GmbH. This latest award follows five other separate EAL5+ certificates awarded to Philips for derivatives from its ‘WE advanced 8-bit’ controller family, including the world’s first EAL5+ certification for an 8-bit smart card controller.
The availability of SmartXA2, as the first 16-bit EAL 5+ certified product, enables card manufacturers and operators to build highly secure smart card and smart token operating systems based on trusted and recognised certified component platforms. SmartXA2 is a true 16-bit smart card controller IC offering the highest performance and security levels alongside support for public key cryptography. Broadly used in Java applications, SmartXA2 offers a variety of additional features including a sophisticated memory management unit and a USB interface, which enables secure and convenient access into PC networks. It also meets the high security, performance and memory needs of multi-application / multi-provider cards.
According to BSI, the importance placed on third party evaluations and technical endorsements for security products has increased in recent years as more complex smart card applications have developed and as demand for more advanced levels of security levels has intensified. Common Criteria certifications, especially those based on the specific Protection Profile for Smart Card ICs, serve as an excellent basis for scheme operators and integrators. They provide the opportunity to work and build on a trusted and recognized platform whilst making improvements in time to market with certified composite products based on a modular evaluation approach. Using this approach, hardware can be evaluated independently of applications making results fully re-usable for subsequent application evaluations and providing customers with added value and reduced cost benefits.
“Philips has consistently proven the quality of its products through formal evaluations based on internationally accepted criteria. We recognise the importance of certified chips to our customers, who in turn need to develop highly secure and validated operating systems”, said Thomas Riener, Manager of Market Sector Security Solutions at Philips Semiconductors. “This latest Common Criteria award for our high performance SmartXA2 IC reinforces our leadership in security and technology and sits with our vision to provide the secure locks and keys to the digital world by offering the highest levels of security across our entire smart-card IC portfolio.”
About EAL5+ and Common Criteria
The EAL5+ evaluation is built on the Smart Card IC Platform Protection Profile (BSI-PP-0002). This Protection Profile is endorsed by Eurosmart and complies with the internationally accepted standard ISO/IEC 15408 (Common Criteria). The Protection Profile was developed by Philips Semiconductors, Atmel, Hitachi, and Infineon in close co-operation with all major card manufacturers.
The first version of the Common Criteria was published in 1998 to be used as a basis for security evaluations of Information Technology products. Evaluation levels range from EAL 1 to 7. The Common Criteria were originally developed as a joint effort between Canada, France, Germany, The Netherlands, The UK and the United States of America with the goal of a Recognition Arrangement (CC-RA). In recent years, the number of countries that have committed to CC-RA has extended to sixteen comprising evaluation levels EAL1 to 4. In Europe, a Recognition Agreement is in place that covers all evaluation levels. (SOGIS-MRA).
About Royal Philips Electronics
Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands is one of the world’s biggest electronics companies and Europe’s largest, with sales of EUR 31.8 billion in 2002. It is a global leader in color television sets, lighting, electric shavers, medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring, and one-chip TV products. Its 166,000 employees in more than 60 countries are active in the areas of lighting, consumer electronics, domestic appliances, components, semiconductors, and medical systems. Philips is quoted on the NYSE (symbol: PHG), London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and other stock exchanges. News from Philips is located at http://www.semiconductors.philips.com.