ORBexpress, a communications middleware made by Objective Interface Systems (OIS), of Herndon, Va., has become the first communications middleware to be evaluated under the Common Criteria international security certification standard. ORBexpress is undergoing this certification for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter's Communications, Navigation and Identification (CNI) system, an avionics system that must be certified to comply with rigorous security requirements. OIS said this evaluation and certification will save programs time and money by making it easier and faster to develop and certify secure systems using fully evaluated COTS communications middleware. "It's interesting to see that the largest program in DoD history is actually focusing on using reusing reusable COTS software on a sort of highly certified basis," said Joe Jacob, senior vice president of OIS. "What's sort of interesting is that this program is actually very focused on improving overall security and reliability of the software components of the aircraft not through building everything on their own from the beginning but actually purchasing off the shelf stuff which both saves money and in the end has a higher degree of reliability because it has undergone security evaluations."