If you are a vendor or developer of an IT security product, you have most probably heard about Common Criteria certification, which is an internationally acknowledged confirmationin cybersecurity. Although more and more IT products and services get Common Criteria certified every year, the subject is still surrounded by many questions
The below article provides you with numerous useful information in case you are not sure what exactly Common Criteria is, or hesitating about your product‘s certification.
Shall we get started?
What is Common Criteria Certification?
Common Criteria for Information Technology Security Evaluation (shortly Common Criteria or CC) is a set of internationally recognized and scalable standards (ISO 15408) for IT security certification. Common Criteria describes the evaluation process, the terminology for defining security requirements, and the manner in which these requirements should be evaluated. The Common Criteria certification assures that an IT security product’s or system’s (Target of Evaluation or TOE) specification, implementation, and cybersecurity evaluation were completed in a standard, rigorous, and repeatable way at a level appropriate for the target operating environment.
What kind of products can get Certified?
Even though the number of Common Criteria certifications occurs to be increasing year after year, it is necessary to understand that only certain types of IT products is likely to be certified. Since 2010, a total of 1665 IT products and systems have been certified, these are them most popular categories:
- ICs, Smart Cards, and Smart Card-Related Devices and Systems: 589 CC certifications
- Network and Network-Related Devices: 237 CC certifications
- Multi-Function Devices: 233 CC certifications
Besides these, a number of Operating Systems, Databases, Firewalls, Application Systems, Secure Signature Systems, File Encryption Solutions, Access Control Devices, and Systems also got Common Criteria certified.
Irrefutable reasons to get a Common Criteria Certification
If, as a developer or vendor, you are not sure whether it is worth getting your IT product or system Common Criteria certified, here are 4 irrefutable reasons:
1. To keep your product competitive
Getting your product CC certified before your rivals, gives you a competitive advantage. Common Criteria certified products are not only in adherence with expected IT security requirements but also have evidence of compliance with recent international professional standards. This helps instill trust in your future customers.
2. To improve your product
One of the main reasons in favor of the Common Criteria certification process is that it can improve your product before market entry. The assessment process may reveal unidentified vulnerabilities that can be fixed before the product is released to the market, avoiding pricey post-release updates and patches.
3. To prevent cybercrime
Evaluating the safety of an IT product or system is crucial in these times when technology evolves faster than the corresponding regulations could keep up with it. The Common Criteria evaluation process on different EALs is currently one of the best alternatives to ensure the cybersecurity of eligible products and systems. Obtaining Common Criteria certification for your product provides a significant benefit since it has been evaluated and qualified by an accredited independent third-party testing laboratory using a rigorous and internationally acknowledged evaluation process.
4. To open the door to new business opportunities
Common Criteria certification may increase your IT system’s or product’s profile and make a more significant impact on new potential purchasers. Besides, it allows your product to be considered by government entities that require Common Criteria certification in their procurement projects. For instance, all IT security solutions acquired by the United States government for national security systems must be Common Criteria certified, and many government agencies expressly state this in their RFPs.
The fight against cybercrime is one of today’s biggest challenges for both IT companies and users. As a developer or vendor of an IT product or system, you have both the possibility and responsibility to ensure its safety. Common Criteria certification is one of the most effective tools for this, which, as the article also presented, provides you with several other advantages in addition to the security of the product.