How PSA Certified Helps the Automotive Industry

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PSA Certified is a third-party evaluation scheme where components can be assessed to be appropriately secure and support compliance with emerging automotive security regulations. Since launching in 2019, PSA Certified has offered a route for improving the security credentials of connected devices. As the promise of software-defined vehicles rapidly becomes a reality, security is more important than ever.

PSA Certified can help the automotive market in a number of ways:

Meeting the complex set of security requirements and regulation from governments and private schemes

Reduced security costs while implementing a Root of Trust

Better visibility and communication about robustness within the value chain

A Simpler Route for Complying with Regulation

As regulation and standards increase globally from both governments and service providers, there are demands being made on both silicon vendors and OEM/ODMs. Since the launch of PSA Certified, the board have been reviewing upcoming regulations and mapping our framework to demonstrate security requirements.

PSA Certified is prescriptive and sufficient in complying with relevant parts of key automotive standards such as ISO21434 and UN Regulation 155 in the requirements they place on Root of Trust in automotive ECUs.

A Scalable Solution that Reduces Design and Development Effort and Speeding Time to Market

PSA Certified lowers design and development efforts and improves time-to-market by providing frameworks and off-the-shelf, security implementations based on a hardware RoT. The PSA Certified Security Model outlines a standard framework in which these security functions and services can be efficiently architected within a Root of Trust. It provides this together with guidance and reference firmware to assist the implementation of secure SoCs for automotive ECUs.

PSA Certified provides architecture specifications, the PSA Certified APIs, and open-source reference implementations. By gathering all crypto providers under a single PSA Certified Crypto API we improve portability and remove the need for re-training engineers with each new piece of crypto hardware. This too erases integration costs and pain points.

A Common Security Language Enables Better Visibility and Communication Within the Value Chain

PSA Certified provides a consistent framework to evaluate security with clear levels, which improves the understanding of what security is inside which components. This is helpful for the automotive industry to understand if components have best practice security, protection from software attacks or protection from hardware attacks.

Certification helps to add a “measurable bar” of robustness for individual components. This is especially useful, as security is fragmented, and “best practice” doesn’t have a set meaning. ODMs/OEMs can use PSA Certified to understand the security credentials of components they are looking to deploy in their value chain.

In other markets, OEMs have already found benefits in stipulating PSA Certified components as a part replacement for, or equivalence to, any current in-house standards. This can reduce costs for device designers who develop or use, application-specific standard products (ASSPs).

PSA Certified has been well adopted by the technology ecosystem, nearing 150 certifications from over 85 different vendors, the scheme is a well-known and understood standard. This makes it easier to compare the credentials of different vendors, rather than deciphering customer evaluations or internal audits.

Lower Certification Costs

PSA Certified’s three pre-defined levels are custom designed for assessing the robustness of SoCs, software and devices. This approach means that the evaluation costs are lower for the standardized PSA Certified evaluation, when compared with bespoke evaluations in other schemes.

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