October 8, 2020

Blog postCode signingEJBCA EnterpriseIdentity Authority ManagerManufacturingSupply chain security

Securing value chains across all industries

Securing value chains

“The world's most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data.”

This was the title story of a popular and well recognized magazine, The Economist, back in 2017. The article talked about the dominance of tech giants, their dealing with consumers’ data, and the need for more control. There was also an antitrust discussion.

On the other hand, the article was showcasing the upside of the data centric economy, new business models, and value chains are changing the rules of the game for many traditional businesses. Today it is clear that the relevance of data for value chains across all industries is growing. It is fundamental for the digitalization and the success of new opportunities in the end. But it also involves new risk scenarios that need to be considered.

Why do I bring this up now? And what does it mean for PrimeKey and for our offering?

PrimeKey’s mission is to create trust for the connected society. In the business context, this can be translated into the mission to secure value chains across all industries. With this in mind, it is clear that our ambition, goal and everyday motivation is, and should be, to offer solutions which create a foundation for trustworthy, digital value chains. PKI, signing and secure hardware technologies are all horizontal technologies. They are versatile and perfectly suited to fulfill this mission across different industries, businesses and use cases. This is precisely PrimeKey’s core competences and solution offering, which puts us in an excellent position to implement the secure and trustworthy fundament required by natively digital organizations. It also speaks to industries that are innovating by digitalizing their workflows and business models, like manufacturing, machinery building, mobility, logistics, health care or telecommunication.

Our mission is nevertheless ambitious and challenging. Rapidly developing IT technologies, changing compliance standards, and everyday new security vulnerabilities in complex technology stacks requiring continuous attention and development will keep us on our toes. The IT environment of tomorrow will be different thanks to the massive use of technologies like containers, cloud platforms, hybrid operations and automated CI and CD pipelines. Additionally, the gap between the actual business cases, related value chains, and the sometimes complex deployment and operation of PKI, signing, and hardware security technologies is growing. This is specifically the case for value chains which are about to be digitalized, like smart production or logistics, but are not IT focused from the beginning. This means that PrimeKey has to continue to evolve and develop our products and technologies to keep up with the fast-moving IT environment, compliance standards and potential security risks.

In parallel, we have to integrate and embed our technologies even more into value chain and workflow eco-systems to deliver immediate value and provide the aforementioned secure fundament.

Over the last years, we have been working on making PKI, signing, and hardware security easier to consume without losing its power and flexibility. We have achieved this by packaging the complex technologies into easy-to-install-and-operate solutions, also making them cost efficient by simplifying the maintenance processes.

PrimeKey has also remained committed to keeping up with the changes in standards and regulations driven by eIDAS and CAB Forum. With our flexible deployment models, ranging from software and hardware appliances, over cloud and SaaS solutions, to custom deployments with flexible solution architectures and services, we now have a portfolio addressing the needs for most demands across many industries and sizes of deployments. We believe that we are well prepared to address the challenges ahead. With our upcoming new products, we plan to continue on our mission to deliver easy to use, cost efficient PKI, signing, and hardware security solutions that deliver true business value.

  • Management Center will further simplify the management of certificates and workflows across the PrimeKey products bringing them into a bigger context.
  • Identity Authority Manager appliance will close the gap between IT and security related workflows involving PKI and signing and the OT processes on the manufacturing floor of connected factories bringing secure, digital identities to many IoT and IIoT related products.
  • We are also planning to further integrate our core technologies, EJBCA and SignServer, into the most popular IT environments offering native support for popular containers platforms, MDM solutions and others.

Last but not least, by further simplifying the use of the PrimeKey SEE platform, we believe we can further lower the costs and efforts needed to provide a holistic security approach for any critical application. One can argue about the data and oil analogy as data has different levels of relevance across industries, but we believe it is certain that this relevance will increase.

What is also certain is that the relevance and spread of digital or digitalized value chains will increase as well and will put new requirements on processes, ways of working, organizational mindsets and technologies to secure those. PrimeKey sees it as our mission to support this evolution across all industries by offering our technologies, products, services and our competences. We will continue to invest and further improve to offer flexible, secure and cost-efficient solutions.

Martin Oczko from PrimeKey on securing the connected factory


Martin Oczko

Martin Oczko holds an MS in Computer Science and has over 15 years of experience in IT security. He has been working in different technical and sales positions for globally acting IT security software and hardware vendors before joining PrimeKey in 2012. Since then, Martin was responsible for the product management, development and production of PrimeKey’s hardware based products like the EJBCA Appliance and SEE. Martin is currently responsible for PrimeKey’s product portfolio and product strategy, as well as the operations of PrimeKey Labs in Aachen, Germany.