Infineon, XAIN team to bring blockchain into the car

October 25, 2018 //By Julien Happich
Infineon, XAIN team to bring blockchain into the car
Infineon Technologies and XAIN have agreed to work together on bringing blockchain technology into the car. The Munich semiconductor maker and the Berlin-based start-up have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Infineon’s 1st Automotive Cybersecurity Forum, with the aim to test possible applications and develop suitable ones to market maturity.

“Cybersecurity is crucial for the data-driven mobility of the future”, says Peter Schiefer, President of Infineon’s Automotive Division. “Blockchain technology has enormous potential in this regard, but its use requires a high degree of coordination between the selected blockchain methodology and the security hardware installed in the car itself. We will be working together with XAIN to achieve this level of configuration.”

A blockchain is a decentralized database that enables speedy transactions and particularly secure, tamper-free storage. In connection with cars, feasible applications for this technology include automated payments, keyless access for car sharing schemes, on-demand services, tuning protection, and automated driving functions.

Essentially, it is all about the granting of access rights – to the car itself or to specific data in the vehicle. An example involving specific data is when insurance companies offer low rates for car owners with good driving habits.

All of Infineon’s 2nd generation AURIX microcontrollers can provide support for blockchain functionality in cars already today. This support is based on an embedded hardware security module (HSM) that complies with the highest level of the EVITA security standard. An HSM consists of special computing and storage units within the microcontroller. It performs the cryptographic operations and is protected by a dedicated firewall of its own.

The 2nd generation AURIX microcontrollers thus have a secured memory for the digital key used for identification in the blockchain and are able to perform blockchain operations, such as hashing or digital signing, swiftly and securely. Certified security controllers such as the OPTIGA TPM 2.0 from Infineon for automotive applications allow even higher security levels to be reached.


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