It has never been more important for embedded developers to understand and implement security in their products. Without this, they expose their products and companies to the risks of hijacked devices or the exposure of customer data. This can leave your company open to costly lawsuits and damage to your company’s brand and reputation.
Ka-Ro has enabled a combination of secure services for TX COMs which together allow our customers to develop and deploy a secure product. These include:
Linux mainline BSP: By enabling continuous Linux development releasing their BSP to mainline Linux, Ka-Ro ensures that the latest security patches are available to our customers. Vulnerabilities are constantly discovered and patched, and it’s important to always have access to the latest Linux version. By keeping the BSP in the mainline, it is easy to leverage the work of the Linux community to keep your product secure.
If a BSP is not constantly updated, it becomes more and more difficult to apply security patches, until it becomes impossible, and a product is open and exposed to known vulnerabilities.
Secure Boot Services: It is no longer feasible to create an embedded product where the firmware is never updated after it is shipped. All connected products (by either Ethernet or wireless) are open and vulnerable to attack, risking the security and data on an entire system. Even with secure networking connections, hacking can expose valuable financial and personal data contained on your product.
Secure Boot services builds security into the foundation of your product. Ka-Ro leverages the ARM and NXP technology built into i.MX processors to ensure that your product cannot be accessed with a digitally signed authentication. This creates an important benefit to your customers who use your products: You can assure them that your products are secure and safe from attack and will only receive authorized product updates.
These pre-configured services are available from Ka-Ro now and require no complicated low-level development on your part.
Secure JTAG: In addition to software, it’s important to secure hardware ports to prevent access for unauthorized entry. JTAG, when used for development and device programming, is a point of vulnerability that must be controlled.
In the Ka-Ro TX form factor, JTAG is not part of the standard pinout on the edge of TX COMs. Instead it is provided as separate landing pads. JTAG can be used during product development and to program TX modules with custom firmware, but once the TX COM is installed in your product, there is no access to JTAG, eliminating the possibility of hacking or reprogramming via JTAG.
Ka-Ro’s secure solutions for TX COMs combine to protect your products, your customers, and your company’s brand and reputation.
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Founded in 1988, Ka-Ro celebrates it’s 30th anniversary with a continuing commitment producing high-quality products made in Germany. Founded to provide Electronics Manufacturing Services, Ka-Ro has grown from a pioneer to a global leader in the Computer-on-Modules (COMs) market. After 30 years, Ka-Ro continues to provide the highest quality products and manufacturing services from their integrated design and production facility in Aachen.
Ka-Ro’s TX ARM-based COMs are used worldwide in demanding industrial and transportation applications and medical devices. Based on NXP processors, development kits include custom and continuing support for Mainline Embedded Linux, Yocto Project, and Microsoft Windows Embedded. Customers depend on Ka-Ro for proven quality, expert support and the guaranteed long-term availability they need to succeed.
From the heart of Europe, Ka-Ro creates modules with the highest quality German-made precision. Design and production is NEVER outsourced. Ka-Ro continues to provide electronics manufacturing services, with the latest SMT equipment in-house to support customers from prototyping to large-volume production.
Ka-Ro products and services are available through an international network of distribution partners: http://www.karo-electronics.com/sales.html
Family Concept – Ka-Ro TX COMs
All Ka-Ro’s TX modules conform to the TX Standard. Created in 2003, The TX Standard designates common pins for display interfaces, common industrial ports (serial, CAN, I2C, I/O etc.) TX modules can be easily interchanged, making it easy to upgrade performance or optimize BOM cost. Ka-Ro software BSPs make application code easily transferable as well.
Proven Product Quality – Designed and Made in Germany
Our state-of-the art design and manufacturing facility in Aachen ensures complete quality control through all phases of production and testing. Automated testing procedures are applied to each module produced, and a complete record is maintained in a permanent quality database. Ka-Ro stands behind their modules with not just a 12-month warranty, but a long history of proven, nearly defect-free shipments.
The foundation of Ka-Ro’s commitment to quality is ISO:9001 certification. First certified in 1995, Ka-Ro has maintained certification for over 20 years. The processes for product design and manufacturing are now second nature and are visible in both product quality and in onsite customer inspections, which are welcome at any time.
When a Ka-Ro module is designed into a customer product, Ka-Ro’s quality processes ensure a trouble-free product lifetime. Ka-Ro will not substitute components, so a standard Bill of Material provides complete component traceability. If a component on the BOM is updated, customers receive a Product Change Notification notice, an opportunity to make a Last-Time Buy, and time test and certify the revised module. Ka-Ro will not ship revised hardware without prior customer approval.
Building on this foundation of proven quality, Ka-Ro has developed a deep expertise in COM design and software development. Experienced Ka-Ro engineers continue to develop new modules and the software support. These same engineers provide customers with technical support, providing customers the exact answer needed in the shortest time. There is no relying on community forums to provide answers that may not even be correct.
Guaranteed Long-Term Availability
Ka-Ro makes a written commitment to providing long-term availability for TX modules, ensuring availability for at least 12 years after the processor introduction. Processors and components are selected for longevity, so customers can maintain an extended lifecycle, continuing production long after certification as customer demands ramps and volumes increase. The family concept ensures an easy migration path for future product upgrades.