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2 October 2017

Arcturus Launches Solutions to Manage Remote IoT Sites

Arcturus Networks has launched the Mbarx Site Controller gateway stack to make it easier to the securely manage remote IoT sites.

The solution targets commercial-grade IoT deployments that require endpoints to be located inside remote networks, spread across many facilities or otherwise not directly addressable from the internet. The solution leverages the TLS-based chain-of-trust architecture built into the Mbarx Secure IoT ecosystem, extending capability to provide secure connectivity, control and management across many device sites.

The Mbarx Site Controller makes it possible to reliably provide secure connectivity from a public network to devices located in remote subnets or behind cone or symmetric NAT firewalls. This improves the overall security architecture of IoT systems by providing a tightly managed central gateway and service, eliminating the need for each endpoint node to open and maintain its own connection to the public network.

The solution uses X509 Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) certificates and Transport Layer Security (TLS v1.2) secure communication. In addition to this authentication and encryption, the system provides further payload integrity, authenticity and compatibility validation. This combination of security features provides a complete chain-of-trust architecture that spans across the entire ecosystem of Mbarx tools, gateways and endpoints.

"For commercial applications, it may not be desirable to have hundreds of devices egress a home network to connect to a Cloud service," said David Steele, product manager. "Applications in environments such as building systems, healthcare facilities or transportation networks, may operate in their own local, private Cloud. Management of these systems by a manufacturer or by a central resource often requires physically going to the location to change configuration or deploy new firmware, this can be an expensive and time consuming proposition."

The Mbarx Site Controller, which is built on top of Linux, resides at the edge of the device network and tracks endpoints by monitoring the Mbarx service discovery announcements. This database resource is used by a connecting application as a method to establish a secure point-to-point connection, proxying through the gateway, to each device.

The system supports a firmware update service that makes use of an internal firmware repository, this makes it possible for devices to obtain firmware securely, from a trusted service, at the local site location. The Mbarx Site Controller is fully compatible with the powerful Mbarx System Manager desktop application, which is used for the management workflow of devices and sites.

Mbarx tools and gateways

Mbarx tools help manage IoT networks by handling site-wide workflow. Mbarx System Manager supports firmware deployments, configuration, templates and site monitoring, using simple click-through, browser-like workflow. A built-in app’s store provides a method to securely acquire firmware images from a trusted source, while a secure upgrade service allows devices to periodically call home and check for new firmware automatically.

Mbarx tools and gateways can be added as needed allowing a flexible, extensible building block approach to IoT systems. Tools can be OEM branded through customization provided directly by Arcturus. This simplified approach allows developers to focus on their core IoT application and spend less time developing or maintaining underpinning IoT elements.

Pricing and availability

An online lab is available for trials of Mbarx Secure IoT endpoints, tools and gateways. Bundled gateway software is available for Arcturus hardware platforms, including the high-performance uCP1020, a communications-grade, system-on-module (SoM) gateway platform. For more information or to set up a demo, contact Arcturus.

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