Infineon Technologies Introduces Single-Chip Security Controller with USB Interface: Sets New High Mark for Secure Public Key Cryptography

Apr 23, 2002 | Technology Media

Munich, Germany / New Orleans, Louisiana / London – April 23, 2002 – Infineon Technologies (FSE/NYSE: IFX), the world's leading supplier of integrated circuits (ICs) for chip cards, today introduced a high-security single-chip microcontroller with an USB interface, providing manufacturers of USB enabled chip cards and USB dongles with a cost-optimized solution for public key cryptography, secure network log-on and authentication for e-commerce transactions. The new USBsec™ microcontroller, which is designed to support the highest level of security defined by international criteria for chip devices, significantly increases the overall performance of USB-connected security tokens such as chip cards and dongles.

The new SLE66CUX640P microcontroller extends Infineon’s strategy of providing chip-based e-security layers at the point where people connect to computer networks. The built-in USB interface reduces the cost of secure network access and authentication system applications by more than 30 percent, as it eliminates the need to use a separate chip card reader in the system design. File encryption and decryption as well as hashing are executed on the secure token, which communicates at high-speed to a system using only an inexpensive physical connector to an USB port in chip card applications, or directly connected to the USB port of a system in a dongle application.

Security Features of SLE66CUX640P

The USBsec controller sets a new standard in security for USB dongles and USB chip cards. The product is based on controller technology certified under the “Information Technology Security Evaluation Criteria“ (ITSEC) with an effectiveness level of “high” for evaluation level E4. This certification, which is equivalent to the “evaluation assurance level” 5 (EAL5) of the international standard “Common Criteria”, verifies that the Infineon chip card controller provides the highest available level of security evaluation for components in chip card applications and meets all requirements for a qualified electronic signature.

Based on a CPU core that was developed specifically for secure chip card applications, the USBsec includes hardware-implemented encryption functionality supporting DES/Triple-DES, RSA cryptography, elliptic curves cryptography and hash algorithms; a true random number generator fully implemented in hardware; and the industry’s strongest DPA/SPA (Differential Power Analysis / Simple Power Analysis) countermeasures.

Infineon is the only semiconductor manufacturer to offer a hash accelerator implemented in hardware compliant to SHA-1 and MD5 hash algorithms required by digital signature laws. The performance of the hash accelerator is even higher than the maximum data rate of 12 Mbit/sec supported by USB1.1. Thus, streaming hashing rates up to the maximum USB1.1 payload can be supported. The DES/Triple-DES accelerator allows streaming cryptography data rates up to 3 Mbit/sec for Triple-DES (Data Encryption Standard) via USB. The dedicated RSA (Rivest, Shamir, Adleman) cryptography accelerator processes digital signatures with key lengths of 1,024 bits in 420 milliseconds (at 10 MHz, without Chinese Remainder Theorem CRT), RSA algorithms with key lengths of 2,048 bits can also be processed using the CRT.

For chip card applications, the USBsec includes an automatic interface detection mechanism to support the dual interface, ISO7816 and USB1.1 applications. When inserted into an ISO7816 reader, a chip card will automatically establish an ISO7816-communication between chip card and reader, and it will establish an USB1.1-communication with a USB1.1 master device when connected via USB.

Beside the ISO7816 and USB1.1 interfaces, the SLE66CUX640P provides an additional general purpose interface with three General Purpose I/Os (GPIO) to control LEDs or to emulate an I2C-bus to connect further peripherals. Produced in 0.25 micron process technology, the device features memory capacity of 128 Kbytes of ROM, 64 Kbytes of EEPROM, and 4 Kbytes of RAM.

With the introduction of USBsec, Infineon now provides ICs supporting all relevant chip card interfaces: ISO7816; the contactless interfaces ISO14443 A, B and C; and USB1.1.

Availability and Pricing

Engineering samples of the SLE66CUX640P will be available in Q3 2002 with volume production planned in Q4 2002. The product is shipped as sawn wafers. In quantities of 10,000, the SLE66CUX640P is priced below US $ 6.00 (Euro 6.60) per unit. A derivative with 32 Kbytes of EEPROM is planned to be available the end of 2002.

A robust tool chain, ranging from a software-based simulator to a real-time capable emulator toolset, is provided for system developers. The tooling is an extension to the standard tool chain provided for the 66Plus series.

Infineon will be present at CardTech/SecurTech Conference and Exhibition (22.-25. April 2002) at booth 819 in the New Orleans Morial Convention Center and at Infosecurity Conference (23.-25. April 2002) at booth 370 in London.

Further information on SLE66CUX640P is available at

About Infineon

Infineon Technologies AG, Munich, Germany, offers semiconductor and system solutions for applications in the wired and wireless communications markets, for security systems and smartcards, for the automotive and industrial sectors, as well as memory products. With a global presence, Infineon operates in the US from San Jose, CA, in the Asia-Pacific region from Singapore and in Japan from Tokyo. In the fiscal year 2001 (ending September), the company achieved sales of Euro 5.67 billion with about 33,800 employees worldwide. Infineon is listed on the DAX index of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX). Further information is available at

Copyright © 2002 Infineon Technologies North America Corp. All rights reserved. Infineon and the stylized Infineon Technologies design are registered trademarks and service marks of Infineon Technologies AG. Other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.

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  • Single-chip security controller with USB interface, the USBsec, for use in USB dongles and USB chip cards sets new high mark for secure public key cryptography
    Single-chip security controller with USB interface, the USBsec, for use in USB dongles and USB chip cards sets new high mark for secure public key cryptography
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