Microsoft Unveils New Edge Secured-Core IoT Devices to Block Firmware Attacks

Cloud Computing and Security

Microsoft has announced that it’s expanding the Secured-core initiative to enhance the security of Internet of Things (IoT) devices. The company has also launched new Edge Secured-core certified devices designed to provide greater protection against firmware-based attacks.

Microsoft first unveiled its certification program for secured-core Windows 10 PCs back in 2019. Last year, the company extended this program to include servers running Windows Server and Azure Stack HCI. The Secured-core initiative targets enterprise customers who want to ensure the security of the Windows OS running on non-Microsoft hardware.

The Edge Secured-core certification program brings several new security capabilities for enterprise customers. First up, it offers a built-in security agent to help IT admins secure their IoT devices from cyber attacks. Edge Secured-core devices also support data encryption at rest and in transit.

“IoT devices such as gateways, which are often used to connect downstream devices to the cloud, need inherent support for protecting data in transit. Edge Secured-core devices help support up-to-date protocols and algorithms that are used for data-in-transit encryption,” explained Deepak Manohar, Principal PM Manager, Azure Edge and Platform security.

The Edge Secured-core certification program helps to ensure hardware-based device identity protection for Azure IoT Hub connections. Moreover, these IoT devices offer seamless integration with the Microsoft Azure Attestation service.

Microsoft Unveils New Edge Secured-Core Devices to Block Firmware Attacks

Edge Secured-core certified IoT devices

Microsoft noted that the list of new Secured-core IoT certified products includes Lenovo ThinkEdge SE30, Asus’s AAEON SRG-TG01, Intel’s NUC 11 Pro Mini PC, and ASUS PE200. The company plans to release updates for these for at least 60 months from the date of submission.

With companies pursuing digital transformation at an unprecedented rate, security remains a major concern for IT administrators. Edge deployment introduces new threat vectors and expands the attack surface.

The Redmond giant claims that its Secured-core initiative helped to make Windows PCs 60 percent more resilient to malware attacks, and these capabilities are now coming to IoT devices. Microsoft’s David Weston said on Twitter that it’s “A huge step forward in making IoT devices as secure as modern laptops, phones, and cloud infrastructure.”

If you’re interested, you can head to the Azure Certified Device catalog to purchase the new Windows IoT Edge Secured-core devices. You can also check out Microsoft’s blog post about “best practices for managing IoT security concerns.”