Saturday, 6 October 2018

Chinese spy chips would be a ‘god-mode’ hack, experts say

Chinese operatives allegedly poisoned the technical supply chain of major US companies, including Apple and Amazon by planting a microchip on their servers manufactured abroad, according to a Bloomberg report today. The story claims that one chip, which was reportedly planted on servers’ motherboards assembled for a company called Elemental by a separate company called Super Micro Computer, would allow attackers to covertly modify these servers, bypass software security checks, and, essentially, give the Chinese government a complete backdoor into these companies’ networks.
Affected companies are vigorously disputing the report, claiming they never discovered any malicious hardware or reported similar issues to the FBI. Even taking the Bloomberg report at its word, there are significant unanswered questions about how widely the chip was distributed and how the backdoor access was used.
But the mere idea of a malicious chip implant has already sent shock waves through the security world, which has traditionally focused on software attacks.

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