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Security Industry Incapable of Finding Firmware Attackers 94

New submitter BIOS4breakfast writes "Research presented at CanSecWest has shown that despite the fact that we know that firmware attackers, in the form of the NSA, definitely exist, there is still a wide gap between the attackers' ability to infect firmware, and the industry's ability to detect their presence. The researchers from MITRE and Intel showed attacks on UEFI SecureBoot, the BIOS itself, and BIOS forensics software. Although they also released detection systems for supporting more research and for trustworthy BIOS capture, the real question is: when is this going to stop being the domain of research and when are security companies going to get serious about protecting against attacks at this level?"
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Security Industry Incapable of Finding Firmware Attackers

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  • by techno-vampire ( 666512 ) on Wednesday March 19, 2014 @12:48PM (#46525187) Homepage
    I can remember when there was a jumper on the motherboard that had to be shifted before it was possible to flash the firmware. If all motherboards had that, the only way an attacker could get malware into the BIOS (or whatever other firmware they wanted to target) would be by tricking the user into changing the jumper. Not only that, many of the users who'd be foolish enough to fall for that kind of trick wouldn't have the confidence to open up their box and play with the hardware. Not all, of course, but then, no security measure is 100% effective.
  • by icebike ( 68054 ) on Wednesday March 19, 2014 @03:09PM (#46526529)

    Have you seen newer motherboards? They have 16mb+ of flash for the BIOS.
    Oodles of room to do fun stuff in.

    And they are all infested with UEFI, the worst malware foisted upon the general public in decades.

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