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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: Intel

New Hertzbleed Side Channel Attack Affects All Modern AMD and Intel CPUs

New Hertzbleed Side Channel Attack Affects All Modern AMD and Intel CPUs
June 15, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A newly discovered security vulnerability in modern Intel and AMD processors could let remote attackers steal encryption keys via a power side channel attack. Dubbed  Hertzbleed  by a group of researchers from the University of Texas, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Washington, the issue is rooted in dynamic voltage and frequency scaling ( DVFS ), a power and thermal management feature employed to conserve power and reduce the amount of heat generated by a chip. "The cause is that, under certain circumstances, periodic CPU frequency adjustments depend on the current CPU power consumption, and these adjustments directly translate to execution time differences (as 1 hertz = 1 cycle per second)," the researchers said. This can have significant security implications on cryptographic libraries even when implemented correctly as  constant-time code  to prevent timing-based side channels, effectively enabling an attacker to leverage the execut

New Exploit Bypasses Existing Spectre-V2 Mitigations in Intel, AMD, Arm CPUs

New Exploit Bypasses Existing Spectre-V2 Mitigations in Intel, AMD, Arm CPUs
March 10, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Researchers have disclosed a new technique that could be used to circumvent existing hardware mitigations in modern processors from Intel, AMD, and Arm, and stage  speculative execution  attacks such as Spectre to leak sensitive information from host memory. Attacks like  Spectre  are designed to break the isolation between different applications by taking advantage of an  optimization technique  called speculative execution in CPU hardware implementations to trick programs into accessing arbitrary locations in memory and thus leak their secrets. While chipmakers have incorporated both software and hardware  defenses , including  Retpoline  as well as safeguards like Enhanced Indirect Branch Restricted Speculation ( eIBRS ) and  Arm   CSV2 , the latest method demonstrated by VUSec researchers aims to get around all these protections. Called  Branch History Injection  (BHI or Spectre-BHB), it's a new variant of Spectre-V2 attacks (tracked as CVE-2017-5715) that bypasses both e

Malware Can Exploit New Flaw in Intel CPUs to Launch Side-Channel Attacks

Malware Can Exploit New Flaw in Intel CPUs to Launch Side-Channel Attacks
March 08, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A new research has yielded yet another means to pilfer sensitive data by exploiting what's the first "on-chip, cross-core" side-channel attack targeting the ring interconnect used in Intel Coffee Lake and Skylake processors. Published by a group of academics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the  findings  are expected to be presented at the USENIX Security Symposium coming this August. While information leakage attacks targeting the CPU microarchitecture have been previously demonstrated to break the isolation between user applications and the operating system, allowing a malicious program to access memory used by other programs (e.g., Meltdown and Spectre), the new attack leverages a contention on the ring interconnect. SoC  Ring interconnect  is an on-die bus arranged in a ring topology which enables intra-process communication between different components (aka agents) such as the cores, the last level cache (LLC), the graphics unit, and the syst

Intel Adds Hardware-Enabled Ransomware Detection to 11th Gen vPro Chips

Intel Adds Hardware-Enabled Ransomware Detection to 11th Gen vPro Chips
January 13, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Intel and Cybereason have partnered to build anti-ransomware defenses into the chipmaker's newly announced 11th generation Core  vPro  business-class processors. The hardware-based security enhancements are baked into Intel's vPro platform via its  Hardware Shield  and  Threat Detection Technology  (TDT), enabling profiling and detection of ransomware and other threats that have an impact on the CPU performance. "The joint solution represents the first instance where PC hardware plays a direct role in ransomware defenses to better protect enterprise endpoints from costly attacks," Cybereason  said . Exclusive to vPro, Intel Hardware Shield provides protections against firmware-level attacks targeting the  BIOS , thereby ensuring that the operating system (OS) runs on legitimate hardware as well as minimizing the risk of malicious code injection by locking down memory in the BIOS when the software is running to help prevent planted malware from compromising the OS

LVI Attacks: New Intel CPU Vulnerability Puts Data Centers At Risk

LVI Attacks: New Intel CPU Vulnerability Puts Data Centers At Risk
March 10, 2020Mohit Kumar
It appears there is no end in sight to the hardware level security vulnerabilities in Intel processors, as well as to the endless 'performance killing' patches that resolve them. Modern Intel CPUs have now been found vulnerable to a new attack that involves reversely exploiting Meltdown-type data leak vulnerabilities to bypass existing defenses, two separate teams of researchers told The Hacker News. Tracked as CVE-2020-0551 , dubbed " Load Value Injection in the Line Fill Buffers" or LVI-LFB for short, the new speculative-execution attack could let a less privileged attacker steal sensitive information—encryption keys or passwords—from the protected memory and subsequently, take significant control over a targeted system. According to experts at Bitdefender and academic researchers from a couple of universities, the new attack is particularly devastating in multi-tenant environments such as enterprise workstations or cloud servers in the datacenter. And

9 Years of AMD Processors Vulnerable to 2 New Side-Channel Attacks

9 Years of AMD Processors Vulnerable to 2 New Side-Channel Attacks
March 09, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
AMD processors from as early as 2011 to 2019 carry previously undisclosed vulnerabilities that open them to two new different side-channel attacks, according to a freshly published research. Known as " Take A Way ," the new potential attack vectors leverage the L1 data (L1D) cache way predictor in AMD's Bulldozer microarchitecture to leak sensitive data from the processors and compromise the security by recovering the secret key used during encryption. The research was published by a group of academics from the Graz University of Technology and Research Institute of Computer Science and Random Systems (IRISA), who responsibly disclosed the vulnerabilities to AMD back in August 2019. "We are aware of a new white paper that claims potential security exploits in AMD CPUs, whereby a malicious actor could manipulate a cache-related feature to potentially transmit user data in an unintended way," AMD said in an advisory posted on its website over the weekend

US Tech Giants Google, Intel, Qualcomm, Broadcom Break Up With Huawei

US Tech Giants Google, Intel, Qualcomm, Broadcom Break Up With Huawei
May 20, 2019Mohit Kumar
Google has reportedly suspended all businesses with the world's second-biggest smartphone maker, Huawei, and revoked its Android license effective immediately—a move that will have a drastic impact on Huawei devices across the globe. Revoking Android license means Huawei future smartphones will no longer have access to Android updates and apps like Gmail or the Play Store, as well as Google technical support beyond services that are publicly available via open source licensing, Reuters report. Why? That's because last week, U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order declaring a national emergency banning foreign companies—over surveillance fear—from doing telecommunication business in the United States without the government's approval. About the executive order, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that President Trump "has made it clear that this Administration will do what it takes to keep America safe and prosperous, an

Apple Plans to Replace Intel Chips in Macs with its Custom Designed CPUs

Apple Plans to Replace Intel Chips in Macs with its Custom Designed CPUs
April 03, 2018Mohit Kumar
In a major blow to Intel, Apple is reportedly planning to use its custom-designed ARM chips in Mac computers starting as early as 2020, ultimately replacing the Intel processors running on its desktop and laptop hardware. The company makes its own A-series custom chips for iPhones, iPads and other iThings, while the Mac devices use Intel x64 silicon. Now according to a report from Bloomberg, Apple plans to replace Intel's Mac chips with its own homegrown CPUs. The report says Apple executives have a project, codenamed " Kalamata ," that designs desktop-grade Arm-compatible processors, along with a macOS port, allowing the company to craft a uniform architecture across all of its product lines. The report also says this changeover would be part of a "multi-step transition" to make iOS devices and Macs "work more similarly and seamlessly together," helping Apple's plan (project codename ' Marzipan ') to bring iOS apps to Mac for sof
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