Arm Mbed simplifies IoT security, development and device management

By Dipesh Patel, president IoT Services Group, Arm

For Arm, enabling a world of a trillion connected devices requires more than designing the industry’s most efficient and secure chips. We have to make it simple for IoT devices to be securely developed, deployed and managed throughout their lifecycle. This will help organisations take advantage of the opportunities offered by IoT data and combine this with their business data to create valuable business outcomes. However, in talking with these organisations, many feel that pursuing opportunities to achieve these business outcomes through IoT opens themselves up to more IT complexity and greater security concerns.

Security and complexity of integration are legitimate concerns that we’re addressing with our Arm Mbed Platform. This platform provides the necessary IoT building blocks including, connectivity, device management, security and provisioning with the support of a 300,000+ strong developer community that has grown more than 30 per cent in the past year.

It’s also supported by a growing ecosystem of 80 contributing partners such as IBM, which is bridging the Mbed Cloud with IBM Watson IoT Platform. And today, we’ve integrated Mbed Cloud with Cybertrust and GlobalSign to provide more flexible security authentication for IoT devices.

Industry is changing – are you keeping up?

These integrations are just the latest examples of how Arm is staying out in front of the evolving nature of IoT and addressing organisational challenges for implementing at scale. Some of these challenges include fragmentation of suppliers, types of devices, multiple hosting requirements for the IoT environment and regulatory constraints. In fact, Uptime Institute found that 65 per cent of enterprise workloads continue to stay in on-premises data centres, which means that companies require support for an on-premises deployment solution, in addition to public and private cloud integrations.

With these expectations in mind, Mbed Cloud and Mbed Cloud On Premises were designed to provide the powerful device management, connectivity and provisioning that customers demand, supported across multiple public and private clouds, on-premises and hybrid environments. Combining robust security, scalability and simplicity, organisations can manage their entire IoT environment, regardless of how it’s deployed.

Security is priority #1 and requires a collaborative effort

IoT security should be easy to implement, not an inhibitor. The new integrations between Mbed Cloud and Cybertrust and GlobalSign enable customers to BYOC (Bring-Your-Own-Certificate) for flexible and secure IoT authentication, leveraging the public key infrastructure they already use. Security should also be built into development, which is why we are planning to make our free open-sourced development platform, Mbed OSthe first OS to support PSA-Compliant trusted boot, storage and opaque cryptography.

However, even when security is built-in, software updates are often needed to maintain a strong security posture, which is a challenge when there are millions of devices already deployed out in the field. Through our expanded integration with IBM Watson IoT Platform, its users can now manage, provision and update firmware over-the-air for their IoT devices through Mbed Cloud.

Industrial IoT made possible

As organisations continue to shift to Industry 4.0 – the trend towards automation and smart manufacturing – efficiently managing the devices in their IoT deployment can make all the difference. Arm Mbed is uniquely positioned to support these industrial organisations by breaking down the barriers to IoT adoption. This will enable them to branch out into new markets, provide greater value to their end users, and unlock the promise of Industrial IoT.

A few examples of opportunities we’ve been creating for our customers include GMO Cloud, as well as Alphatronics where we helped a waste management company easily secure and connect existing infrastructure to IoT in Belgium.

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