Cinterion® Secure Element: Building a strong foundation of Trust for IoT

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​secure_element.png "The growing reliance on IoT solutions and high profile cyber-attacks are focusing industry minds on the necessity of security technology for continued growth.
Security at this level does not work as an afterthought. It must be incorporated from the ground up with high levels of security."

Robin Duke-Woolley, CEO at leading technology analyst firm Beecham Research


Why securing IoT devices?

 The rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) has opened the door to a world of new possibilities - expanded productivity, enriched services, new business opportunities plus overall conveniences that simplify our lives.

Because an important amount of IoT devices are designed for long lifecycles and are potentially left physically accessible or unattended, they can be particularly vulnerable to IoT security breaches.

With billions of new connections expected in the next decade, it has never been more important to design solutions that can be trusted and can adapt to evolving IoT security threats.

Moreover, it is crucial to protect the most sensitive IoT applications with untouchable security components and encryption capabilities built directly into the IoT devices, during manufacturing. This security-by-design ​will ensure that no-one unauthorised can have access to secret data, even the most malicious supplier on the production chain, keeping devices and data safe for their long lifetime.

​Building a​ foundation of trust with hardware technology

 The award-winning Gemalto Cinterion Secure Element answers IoT security solutions challenges and protect the most critical applications (healthcare, automotive or energy infrastructures, for ex.), ensuring that sensitive data is stored, processed and protected in an isolated trusted environment, inside a connected device.

It is a tamper-resistant hardware component embedded in IoT and industrial connected equipments, to deliver smart card level digital security. As such, it protects critical infrastructures, devices and the data they generate, and ensures access is granted only to authorized applications and people.

The Cinterion Secure Element hosts confidential data (such as the device digital ID) and cryptographic capabilities according to strict industry standards. As part of an advanced, end-to-end security architecture, the Secure Element ensures IoT data confidenti​​ality and integrity and defends against both cyber-attacks and physical attacks.

What are the main functions of the Cinterion Secure Element?

Serving as a secure enclave inside a connected device, the Cinterion Secure Element provides 4 functions:

  1. Protection of the device´s private key
  2. Storage of 3rd parties root certificates
  3. On-board cryptographic capabilities
  4. End-to-end authentication of devices and external IoT platforms (through TLS connection)                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Different personalisation options

The Cinterion Secure Element (SE) is pre-integrated with major reference platforms, helping customers meet varying IoT security requests. It is ideal for both high performance devices, such as gateways, and more constraint ones.

Gemalto also offers different personalisation options, to answer our specific customer use cases.

3 Personalization offers:

  • Ready to Go: Gemalto relieve customers from PKI*-related burden, issues Gemalto-branded device certificates and loads them into the Cinterion SEs.

  • My Identity: Gemalto customers provide their own trusted device certificates which Gemalto loads into the Cinterion SEs.

  • My Operated Identity: Fully operated offer - Gemalto operates the PKI* for the customer as well as generates and securely loads customer-branded device certificates into the Cinterion SEs.

For each option, AWS and Microsoft Azure IoT Platforms´ root certificates are pre-loaded into our Cinterion Secure Elements, to simplify the devices´ cloud onboarding and secure data-to-cloud transfers.



*PKI = Public Key Infrastructure

Last updated in July 2018. 



  • Protect Your M2M IoT Solutions with a Secure Element

    The award-winning Gemalto Cinterion Secure Element provides M2M IoT solutions with tamper-resistant protection against physical and digital attack. It ensures that data is stored in a safe place and access is granted only to authorized applications and people.

    Read all about it in Network World’s Best Practice column