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Computing Breakthrough and Cognitive Router Technology Promises Secure Networking By Design


nquiringMinds, TechWorks and the University of Oxford collaborate to launch The Secure Networking by Design (SNbD) project for the development of advanced, open source, network protections for Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and router vendors.

Leaders in the UK deep tech arena: nquiringMinds, TechWorks and the University of Oxford, have today announced the official launch of The Secure Networking by Design (SNbD) project, pioneering a new age of digital security.

Driven by the increasing problem of cyber security, The Secure Networking by Design (SNbD) project acknowledges the importance of the router as illustrated in a recent industry report* that highlights they  account for over 75% of infected devices with infected routers posing greater threat than infected IOT devices or PCs. The SNbD project directly addresses this ‘hyper-scaling’ threat by combining recent advances in router security (ManySecured) built on a secure computing hardware platform (CHERI/Morello) to harden router and networking protections.

'ManySecured and Morello provide a mighty combination to deliver security. Remote network attacks are dangerous and infectious. They present a security threat with a frightening ability to scale. Hardening this network interface right down to a fundamental silicon level, is an essential component of global security strategy. Our team is perfectly placed to realise this vision.'

Nick Allott, CEO nquiringMinds

'Cyber security attacks are constantly evolving and cost the global economy billions of pounds per year. It is therefore essential that we respond to that challenge with systems and collaborations which can evolve as new threats emerge. SNdB is intended to do just that with advanced technology and the power of the open source community.'

John Moor, COO, TechWorks

'Digital Security by Design is undergoing translation from research to practice at scale. Our project will test the effectiveness of that paradigm shift and blaze a trail towards a security step-change for core network components.'

Professor Andrew Martin, Department of Computer Science, University of Oxford

The ManySecured project is advancing router security by building secure networking elements designed from the ground up. By leveraging concepts of AI, the ManySecured components not only help to detect and prevent attacks, but they also aim to self-heal against emerging security threats and vulnerabilities.

The ARM Morello program seeks to overcome weaknesses with memory safety protections found in traditional computing architectures which account for 70% of operating system vulnerabilities. It has an ambitious goal to radically update the security foundations of digital computing infrastructure which underpins the entire global economy.

By combining the secure router elements provided by ManySecured, with memory protection and secure compartmentalisation features of CHERI/Morello, SNbD will substantially improve the security offered by router technology.

The project aims to make a significant future impact on the security of routers by taking a modular approach, making individual, upgradeable software modules available across common operating systems. From the outset, SNbD is intended to be a self-sustaining, collaborative initiative, with a long-lasting legacy and will adopt an open-source style operation which accepts third party contributions.

The project, part of the Digital Security by Design challenge is funded by the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF), who’s aim is to enrich and expand the Digital Security by Design (DSbD) prior to the availability of commercial hardware.