Intel notified Chinese companies Of Security Flaws before the US Government

Intel notified Chinese companies Of Security Flaws before the US Government

Intel notified Chinese companies Of Security Flaws before the US Government

"According to The Wall Street Journal, Intel initially told a handful of customers about the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities, including Chinese tech companies like Alibaba and Lenovo, before the USA government".

Microsoft has disabled a recent Intel fix for the Spectre CPU flaw after the update caused some systems to unexpectedly reboot.

With so many devices being open to security flaws, Nvidia has confirmed that its GPUs are immune to Spectre and Meltdown flaws.

The matter got out of hands after Intel's Spectre variant 2 mitigation started causing instability (random reboots) on some Windows computers.

Some security researchers expressed concern that in alerting Chinese companies before the USA government, the Chinese government may have been able to exploit the security holes before patches were made widely available.

Even before that news emerged, Intel and other technology companies were already under scrutiny for working quietly behind the scenes to resolve the chip-level flaws without notifying the public.

Windows users received an emergency update over the weekend as Microsoft raced to address yet another issue in the Meltdown/Spectre malware saga.

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While Intel is testing and updating their code, Microsoft has released an update, KB4078130, that disables the mitigation against CVE-2017-5715 - "Branch target injection vulnerability". "We understand that Intel is continuing to investigate the potential impact of the current microcode version ..."

The Windows update can be downloaded from Microsoft's Update Catalog portal. No evidence has been discovered yet that the details fell into the hands of the Chinese government but many in the security community are still concerned.

Since then, some updates to chips made by Intel and AMD were later revealed to cause their own problems.

In its latest quarterly report, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich stated Intel will "restore confidence in data security with customer-first urgency, transparent and timely communication".

This is a major problem for Intel in terms of PR, but so far investors don't seem to be spooked.

In such a situation, it is OK for a company to reach out to customers first so that they're able to develop patches and mitigate security concerns as quickly as possible before the news goes public.

While year-end financial results released last week show Intel enjoyed record earnings in 2017, the company could yet see long-term fallout from the Spectre and Meltdown hardware bugs.

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