Common Criteria Certification

nCipher Security helps you meet your data security compliance requirements by delivering products with globally-recognized Common Criteria certification.

Common Criteria Certification

The Common Criteria for Information Technology Security Evaluation (abbreviated as Common Criteria or CC) is an international standard (ISO/IEC 15408) for computer security certification.

Common Criteria provides assurance that IT security products have been specified and evaluated in a rigorous and repeatable manner and at a level commensurate with the target environment for use.

Originally developed to unify and supersede national IT security certification schemes from several different countries, including the US, Canada, Germany, the UK, France, Australia and New Zealand. Common Criteria is now the widest available mutual recognition of secure IT products.

nCipher delivers security products that have been tested and certified against the rigorous Common Criteria standard, helping you comply with regulations while also giving you the confidence you need in your security solution.

Security Standard

Common Criteria certified solutions are required by governments and enterprises around the world to protect their mission-critical infrastructures. Common Criteria is often a pre-requisite for qualified digital signatures under the European Union digital signature laws. Additionally, U.S. Government customers frequently request products that are National Information Assurance Partnership (NIAP) listed, which requires Common Criteria certification.

The Common Criteria standard provides an assurance on different aspect of the product security covering areas such as:

  • Development of the product and related functional specification, high-level design, security architecture and or implementation design
  • Guidance of the product and related manual for the secure deployment and preparation of the product
  • Life-cycle of the document and all related process applicable during the creation of the product such as configuration management or secure development process and tools used to the deployment and retirement of the product with the life-cycle design and delivery process
  • Supporting security policy documentation
  • Tests of the product and particularly coverage of the functional security requirement
  • Vulnerability assessments
Certification Authorities

Common Criteria is an international standard (ISO/IEC 15408). The Common Criteria Development Board managed the technical work program for the maintenance and ongoing development of the CC set of documentation.

Two majors recognition agreements exist in the Common Criteria:

  • Common Criteria Recognition Arrangement (or CCRA) that comprises 28 countries across all continents, and recognizing the Common Criteria certification up to the level EAL 2 of secure IT products by the CCRA authorizing members
  • Senior Official Group – Information Systems Security (or SOG-IS) that comprises 15 countries from Europe, and recognizing the certification Common Criteria up to the level EAL 7 of secure IT products depending on the level of the SOG-IS members
nCipher Support for the Common Criteria Standard

The nShield Solo XC and nShield Connect XC are certified to Common Criteria EAL4+ AVA_VAN.5 and ALC_FLR.2, meeting the requirements of the EN 419 221-5 Common Criteria Protection Profile. This Protection Profile has become the industry standard for Hardware Security Modules used for electronic signatures meeting the eIDAS Regulation.

With this certification, customers can now use the nShield XC HSM as an EN 419 221-5 certified cryptographic module to develop eIDAS compliant systems.

nShield Connect, nShield Connect+, nShield Solo and nShield Solo+ hardware security modules (HSMs) have been certified to EAL4+ (AVA_VAN.5).

nCipher earned Common Criteria certification for nShield HSMs from the Italian certification agency, Organismo di Certificazione della Sicurezza Informatica (OCSI). This OCSI certification recognizes nShield HSMs as Qualified Signature Creation Devices (QSCDs). By way of this QSCD recognition, nShield HSMs comply to eIDAS (Article 51, Transitional Measures).

The nCipher Common Criteria certification can be found here.

Please find a summary of nShield Common Criteria and other certifications

Download here

Brochures : nShield family brochure

nShield HSMs provide a hardened, tamper-resistant environment for secure cryptographic processing, key generation and protection, encryption and more. Available in three FIPS 140-2 certified form factors, nShield HSMs support a variety of deployment scenarios.


Data Sheet : nShield Connect HSMs

nShield Connect HSMs are certified, networked appliances that deliver cryptographic key services to applications distributed across servers and virtual machines.


Data Sheet : nShield Solo HSMs

nShield Solo HSMs are certified PCI-e card-based solutions that deliver cryptographic key services to applications hosted on individual servers and appliances.


Other key data protection and security regulations




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The eIDAS regulation has been developed to establish a single European market for secure electric commerce, impacting any organisation that handles online transactions with European citizens.

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FIPS 140-2

FIPS 140-2

FIPS 140-2 is a US government computer security standard used to validate cryptographic modules. Many global organizations are also mandated to meet this standard.

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