British semiconductor and software design company ARM has today announced that it is to form a new joint-venture with digital security company Gemalto and financial security firm Giesecke & Devrient to establish a security standard for smartphones, tablets, smart TVs and games consoles.
The new company will form a “Trusted Execution Environment” (TEE), which will utilise existing technologies from the three founding companies, with both Gemalto and G&D contributing their industry patents, operating systems and engineers to the new company.
ARM licenses its processing technologies to the world’s biggest mobile manufacturers, with its CPUs found in most mobile devices including those by Apple, HTC, Nokia, Sony Ericsson and Samsung.
With ARM integrating its TrustZone architecture into every ARM Cortex (a family of processors), future connected devices will have an embedded software environment that can secure devices from the hardware level and upwards, making it easy for vendors and developers to reduce security risks whilst improving privacy.
The three partners intend to boost the payment, content and enterprise markets by securing services that run on connected devices. The intention is that by increasing the level of security on the devices and services, consumers to use them with a greater level of trust.
ARM explains the goal of the new venture:
The new venture will focus on improving security for smart connected devices by developing a Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) based on the established ARM TrustZone security technology. This common, secure environment for software execution will utilize advanced hardware security coupled with industry standard software interfaces, such as those from the GlobalPlatform industry association. By providing this secure environment for multiple silicon, software and device manufacturing partners, the joint venture will enable greater operational efficiency across the ecosystem and the industry as a whole.
ARM will own 40% of the new venture, with Gemalto and G&D holding a 30% stake each.