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Telecommunication

KasperskyOS helps to mitigate cyber risks associated with telecom equipment including remote attacks on hardware aiming to change its configuration or modify its built-in software (firmware) and exploiting built-in backdoors or known vulnerabilities in order to intercept traffic or gain control of equipment. As well as to meet specific requirements of such devices like:

  1. the need to operate autonomously without maintenance or software updates for extended periods of time;
  2. proprietary built-in software;
  3. permanent direct connection to the internet;
  4. minimize the time required to develop security features.

Purpose

Among the cyber threats targeting telecommunications equipment, the following are particularly significant:

  1. Threats associated with unintentional actions:
    1. Employee actions resulting in complete or partial equipment failure, switching off or changing the operation mode.
    2. Unauthorized installation and use of programs that are unaccounted for.
  2. Threats associated with intentional actions:
    1. Remote attacks on hardware aiming to change its configuration or modify its built-in software (firmware).
    2. Exploiting built-in backdoors or known software and hardware vulnerabilities in order to intercept traffic or gain control of equipment or an automated system.
    3. Unauthorized installation and use of programs that are unaccounted for.

While some threats can be mitigated by developing dedicated security software, reliable protection from other threats can only be achieved by installing a trusted computer appliance providing guaranteed protection against unauthorized software installation or execution of undocumented functions.

The only way is to develop a cybersecure integrated software suite that includes an operating system, as well as system and application software.

To address the issue of cybersecurity for telecoms equipment, while minimizing the time required to develop security features, we offer KasperskyOS, a secure operating system based on an architecture that is designed to ensure software is executed securely, including non-secure applications. In addition, KasperskyOS provides protection in the event of random software errors and improper user actions.

Advantages

Initially secure system

KasperskyOS is designed with security in mind and remains secure during its whole lifecycle.

Modular design

A modular approach to system design minimizes the footprint of the trusted base and makes it possible to build each individual solution on a case-by-case basis.

Secure architecture of applications

Application design is based on a component model that makes secure development easy and elegant.

Easy-to-configure policies

IPC typed and simple configuration language help to easily define the rules of interprocess communication and access control.

Verifiability

Strict adherence to security concepts in system design and implementation makes it possible to verify the security of all solutions based on KasperskyOS.

Features

Trusted Channel

This is a set of components that can be used to organize a secure communication channel between a device and a remote party. The technology is based on the TLS protocol, a mature standard protocol providing security for communications. Multiple implementations are available (including open source) from various vendors. However, it is often the case that TLS-based solutions incorporate numerous functions (e.g. Linux process) into one domain:

  • TLS implementation
  • Connection management
  • Application-specific protocol processing (e.g. HTTP)
  • And even more high level logic

It means all these functions must be considered as trusted: compromising any of them results in a whole system being compromised.
Trusted Channel’s main objective is to minimize the size of trusted code by separating secure connection, authorization and remote request processing. In KasperskyOS, a secure connection is made with TLS in a separate domain (entity), as well as authorization of the connection. Neither TLS nor authorization performs any application-specific message processing.
In this architecture, network modules, connection management and any application-specific data processing (e.g. HTTP parsing) are treated as untrusted. The only trusted components are TLS and authorization.

SecureBoot

A secure boot is a basic security technology for embedded systems – the root of trust begins with a secure boot. A secure boot makes it possible to decrypt and check the digital signature of an image of the OS itself (OS core and file systems) and its loaders, and guarantees that an operating system that is damaged or modified by an attacker is not booted.

Secure Storage

Secure Storage is a key-value database with a simple interface, suitable for storing important configuration parameters.
Every parameter in the database is associated with its own security attributes.
A security policy can be applied to get/set a particular parameter based on its security attributes. It is also possible to specify a security policy for the whole update configuration that ensures individual parameter updates are aligned with each other.
KSS uses secure storage to store security policy parameters. Storage can also be used by any application in a system and a security policy has fine-grained control over which application can use which parameters.

SecureUpdate

One of the most important services of the telecommunications equipment is the service of secure device firmware update. Kaspersky Secure Updater is a technology that ensures two important elements of the secure software update. Firstly, it guarantees that an update isn’t compromised and wasn’t modified during the transfer. This is done using different cryptography methods. Secondly, the component ensures the update process makes minimal use of trusted code, significantly reducing the attack surface. The security of most of the Updater is not that important because if these pieces of code are compromised, an attacker is still unable to bypass the updater and secure boot security mechanisms and embed a malware into the firmware.

Security services

Kaspersky Lab offers a set of proactive threat intelligence services for telecoms equipment such as penetration testing and security assessment. Our experts will attempt to discover vulnerabilities and bypass authentication and authorization procedures on behalf of various types of intruders in order to gain control of the equipment.

Technical requirements

  • CPU requirements: Memory Management Unit; IOMMU (SDMA for ARM) is strongly recommended for reliable isolation of hardware resources;
  • Supported architectures: x86, x86_64, ARMv5, ARMv7, ARMv8 and MIPS32;
  • Tested hardware platforms: Intel Generic and Atom CPUs, NXP i.MX6 (Solo, Duo and Quad), NXP i.MX27, TI Sitara AM335x, TI Sitara AM43xx, HiSilicon Kirin620, MIPS24k;
  • Minimum RAM size is solution specific. Recommended RAM size is 128MB.

Patents

US 7386885 B1, US 7730535 B1, US 8370918 B1, EP 2575318 A1, US 8522008 B2, US 20130333018 A1, US 8381282 B1, EP 2575317 A1, US 8370922 B1, EP 2575319 A1, US 9015797 B1, DE 202014104595 U1.

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