embedded systems security testing

Embedded World 2024 – What We Learned

Wednesday, June 05, 2024

This is the first year that we participated as vendors, with a booth and a team. It is one of the biggest embedded events, if not the biggest one in the world.

Attila SzaszGergo Hosszú, and Jonathan Bodo were there. Here is a short video we shot at the venue, and also recap below of the most important takeaways for them.

How would you describe this year’s embedded world event?

 

Attila: I missed last year’s event, but this year’s embedded world was truly a whirlwind of innovation and collaboration. From cutting-edge technologies to insightful discussions, it showcased the latest advancements in embedded systems and IoT, attracting participants from small startups to huge semiconductor companies. The focus on security standards for software-enabled vehicles was also notable. Personally, I enjoyed exploring new IoT devices and meeting the minds behind them. Overall, it was insightful, and I’d sum it up with hashtags like #ai, #automotive, #security, and #innovation.

Jonatan: 2024 feels like an introductory year for embedded security. Many organizations seek solutions to mitigate their security exposure already, while many prepare for upcoming legislation. There is a visible rise in interest, comparing it to 2023. The automotive industry is a security maturity leader, while consumer device manufacturers are still mapping and getting familiar with the potential solutions embedded security providers can offer. It is a new era for the world, as only half of our visitors arrived from Europe. As BugProve is a relatively new company, still we’ve met a lot of people that we were in touch with already, connected online, or in the phase of contracting. Meeting with existing customers and partners, resellers in person is always a great touch, for me specifically, when our business is done 99% online.

The AI hype is real

 

Attila: The AI hype was everywhere, especially focusing on machine learning on the edge and AI safety, crucial for embedded designs. Many argued that AI would streamline development efforts, enhance control precision, and increase device dependability. Though I’m not entirely convinced, there’s certainly room for innovation and value creation in embedded AI applications.

Gergő: AI and security were the two main buzzwords. The upcoming IoT regulations have stirred up calm waters, and more companies are becoming interested in security-related services. Every other booth showcased either an AI-related feature or another new AI-based IoT solution.

What came as a surprise?

 

Gergo: I was amazed by two things. Firstly, the AWS chess robots demo. In this demonstration, two robotic arms engaged in a competitive chess match, showcasing their skills. They utilized a blend of sophisticated artificial intelligence and industrial control algorithms. Secondly, the perspective from the Memfault team on the entire IoT industry. They just simplified device debugging and performance monitoring, and the major players in the RTOS community rely on their expertise. We are truly fans of what they have built so far.

Attila: I was pleasantly surprised by the traction Rust has gained in the ecosystem, notably seen in a long-standing debugging equipment vendor now supporting Rust workflows and firmware debugging. Rust’s rapid integration into embedded systems suggests a shift towards prioritizing memory safety, potentially reshaping the narrative around IoT security. While C and C++ remain dominant, Rust’s emergence hints at a future where ‘R’ for Rust might replace ‘S’ for security in IoT.

Jonatan: I am always fascinated with the scope of this event, the various exhibitors, and the 30 thousand visitors. I’ve seen it in advance, however, the security area was interestingly small, and only a handful of security providers targeted the venue this year. On the other hand, we sensed increasing interest in this area.

What is the single biggest takeaway for you?

 

Attila: Apart from the increasing security awareness, my biggest takeaway is that the IoT space, typically perceived as slow-moving compared to other tech sectors, is now experiencing unprecedented dynamism. This surge in activity signals a shift, positioning IoT as a dynamic and rapidly evolving sector within the tech industry. It’s clear that innovation in IoT is accelerating, presenting both opportunities and challenges for companies. Recognizing and harnessing this momentum will be essential for driving growth and innovation within IoT organizations.

Gergo: The major regulation (CRA) will take effect around 2027. However, there were a few IoT manufacturers who had the best mindset regarding IoT security. They began to realize that security doesn’t end with a single security test or a stamp obtained for basic compliance. Every manufacturer and distributor needs to take security seriously, starting yesterday, and view it as a competitive advantage rather than a cost center. So, my biggest takeaway was that companies and developers begin to take the security aspect of their products seriously. This is a significant shift, marking a new era in the embedded world.

Jonatan: To me, this proved as evidence that BugProve and our automatized solutions are a definite need for many industries, and we are at the right place at the right time. It is always hard to map international drivers through complicated supply chains when it comes to embedded devices. Right now many manufacturers are preparing for the security challenges of the future, and my perspective is that the supply chain will have to keep up.

This post was originally published in https://bugprove.com/knowledge-hub/embedded-world-2024-what-we-learned/

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