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We carry it in our wallets and coat pockets, use it on our travels, or use it for checking into our office PC. But hardly anyone is aware that, by doing this, they are entrusting their personal data to one of the most secure operating systems on the IT market: Telesec Chipcard Operating System – in short TCOS.
TCOS is certified as a highly secure smartcard operating system by the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) and tested for passports or ID cards according to the internationally recognized "Common Criteria" procedure. This secure operating system turns ID cards and passports into the most secure components for international travel and provides excellent protection for digital identies and cryptographic keys. More than 100 million passports, personal and company ID cards, digital tachographs or electronic tickets in Europe are equipped with the highly secure TCOS operating system.
The stored data in TCOS chips are protected with different security measures. For example the PACE protocol provides protection against unauthorized access to data via a contactless interface. The chip on identity documents has a passport photo and fingerprints stored on it, among other things.
TCOS organizes the encryption and protects the personal data against unauthorized access. It safely stores keys and calculates the cryptographic algorithm within the chip. Keys never leave the chip card and remain protected even during their usage.
But why is a Identity Solution based on TCOS so secure? Apart from the software design by security experts, TCOS is implemented exclusively for a very secure hardware that supports the protection of keys and personal data. Although initially designed for electronic documents fulfilling international requirements, TCOS is constantly being developed to fit the needs of our customers in many other application areas. Changes in current hardware and new secure hardware platforms are monitored and evaluated in collaboration with chip manufacturers to aim for considerable improvements in security.
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