Continued from “FIPS 140 Made Easy” Part 1…
“Do you have any suggestions for me?”
- Maybe you only need a level 4 for one of the areas. For example, let’s say you only need to meet the FIPS 140-2 level 4 physical security requirements. It’s possible have your device’s physical security certified a level 4, but have an overall certification level of 2. This might be good enough for the application your customers have in mind, and it will take much less time and money to get the certification.
- Consider changing your design so that it has approved and non-approved modes of operation. Some of your customers may not want a device that obeys all the rules of FIPS 140-2. You can retain a non-approved mode of operation that will function in a way that will still satisfy those customers.
- Make the Finite State Machine description of your device as simple as possible. That means with as few states and as few ways to move between those states a possible. These should be a high level finite state machine. Your device will obviously have many more low level states, but the more states you add to your high level description, the more work you’ll make for yourself and the more work you’ll make for the certifying lab.
- If there is an embedded OS, consider designing your system so that the OS cannot be modified. If you don’t do this, for level 2 devices and above, you’re going to need to ensure that the operating environment is evaluated to at least Common Criteria Effective Assurance Level 2 (EAL 2). If the operating environment hasn’t already been evaluated, the addition work necessary will significantly increase your development costs, and will cause significant schedule delays.”
“What about FIPS 140-3?”
To be continued…