MISSISSAUGA, Ontario -- September 4, 2007
-- Digital entertainment content (Hollywood movies, for example) is worth billions of dollars at retail. The companies manufacturing the devices that play digital entertainment content take significant precautions to protect it. Sicon Semiconductor is one of those companies.
Certicom Corp. (CIC) announced today that Sicon Semiconductor has licensed Certicom® KeyInject™ system to protect the high-definition digital content protection (HDCP) cryptographic keys that it embeds into its silicon chips for use in TVs, projectors, monitors and other consumer products.
HDCP is an industry-standard scheme designed to protect high-value content as it travels between the source and monitors, and other presentation devices. The cryptographic keys encrypt the content and authenticate the monitor.
For silicon manufacturers, the challenge is to ensure that the HDCP keys are protected from the time they are delivered from the licensing body through the end of the silicon manufacturing and assembly process. Failure to provide adequate protection could be seen as a violation of the HDCP licensing agreement, and can result in significant fines.
Protection at each step
Sicon Semiconductor develops state-of-the-art high-performance HDMI/HDCP products. To ensure the security of its products, Sicon uses Certicom KeyInject to encrypt the keys to the fabrication plant, and Certicom Production Control Core to encrypt and authenticate the keys within the tester – a known vulnerability as the keys are ‘in the clear’ just before they are injected into the silicon.
“There’s a lot at stake in this industry, and the penalty for failing to provide adequate protection can be crippling,” says Jan-Erik Lennefalk, Marketing VP at Sicon Semiconductor. “Most manufacturers are aware of the vulnerabilities so, for us, the question is: Do we develop our own solution, or go with a proven, tested solution from a company that has spent the last 20 years developing security products? We have placed our bets on the latter.”
Certicom’s KeyInject system also provides a key management and audit trail, so that companies like Sicon Semiconductor can account for the keys used during manufacturing, and thereby detect any irregular usage.
“Content protection is one of the most important issues facing industry today and is a significant market opportunity for us. The value of the content itself represents billions of dollars. When you factor in the value of a company’s reputation, you’re looking at even more,” says Bernard Crotty, Certicom's president and CEO. “Certicom provides the strong security solutions that industry players, like Sicon Semiconductor, are using to protect these valuable assets.”
Sicon Semiconductor, based in Linköping, Sweden, is a fabless innovation and product company with over 25 years’ experience in mixed signal and analog design. Sicon’s solutions are based on its patented PSAR technology (time-interleaved A/D architecture) for Analog-to-Digital conversion, which enables industry-leading solutions for video and graphics multimedia interface. The resulting performance and cost benefits allow both consumer and professional applications to be realized. Sicon’s A/D products are designed using leading-edge standard CMOS processes. The company’s unique scalable, portable technology allows customers to secure optimum cost/performance, while simultaneously answering their toughest TTM needs. Sicon is headquartered in Linköping Sweden, with development subsidiaries in Santa Clara USA, Bangalore India and Singapore, and sales offices in Seoul Korea, Tokyo Japan and Shenzhen China.
Certicom protects the value of your content, applications and devices with government-approved security. Adopted by the National Security Agency (NSA) for classified and sensitive but unclassified government communications, Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC) provides the most security per bit of any known public-key scheme. As the undisputed leader in ECC, Certicom security offerings are currently licensed to more than 300 customers including General Dynamics, Motorola, Oracle, Research In Motion, Sony Ericsson and Unisys. Founded in 1985, Certicom’s corporate offices are in Mississauga, ON, Canada with worldwide sales and marketing headquarters in Reston, VA and offices in the US, Canada and Europe. Visit www.certicom.com