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Intel Patches Widespread Processor Vulnerability

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Intel Patches Widespread Processor Vulnerability

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The unusual vulnerability may have allowed for escalation of privilege, denial of service or data disclosure assaults.

Intel has printed a repair for a possible vulnerability that affected some Intel processors. The safety flaw, named Reptar, causes “very unusual habits,” mentioned Google’s Tavis Ormandy, who is without doubt one of the researchers who found the bug.

No assaults have been reported utilizing the Reptar bug. Nevertheless, Ormandy famous the bug is probably wide-reaching and never but absolutely understood: “… we merely don’t know if we will management the corruption exactly sufficient to attain privilege escalation,” he wrote on his web site in regards to the Reptar vulnerability. “I believe that it’s potential, however we don’t have any method to debug μop (micro) execution!”

Bounce to:

What’s the Reptar bug?

Put very merely, Reptar breaks some primary guidelines of how processors normally work and will result in a system crash, escalation of privilege assaults, denial of service assaults or undesirable data disclosure.

The issue was with the prefixes used to switch directions when writing x86 meeting. The prefix rex may work together in sudden methods on machines with a characteristic known as quick brief repeat transfer; this characteristic was first launched in Intel’s Ice Lake structure. Ormandy has a way more technical rationalization.

SEE: Google Cloud suggested safety groups ought to preserve a watch out for a huge number of assaults in 2024 (TechRepublic)

The “unusual habits” Ormandy and his Google colleagues discovered included branches to sudden places, unconditional branches being ignored and inaccurate recordings of the instruction pointer in xsave or name directions. Ormandy additionally discovered {that a} debugger returned unimaginable states when the researchers have been attempting to look into the issue.

MITRE tracks this bug as CVE-2023-23583.

Intel patched a wide range of processors

On Nov. 14, Intel addressed the potential flaw in a wide range of processors. Intel mitigated the flaw in:

  • twelfth Technology Intel Core Processors.
  • 4th Technology Intel Xeon Processors.
  • thirteenth Technology Intel Core Processors.

Intel launched a microcode replace for:

  • tenth Technology Intel Core Processors.
  • third Technology Intel Xeon Processor Scalable Household processors.
  • The Intel Xeon D Processor.
  • The eleventh Technology Intel Core Processor Household on desktop and cell.
  • The Intel Server Processor.

Intel was conscious of the potential bug earlier this 12 months

Intel had been conscious of this bug beforehand to the Google researchers’ work on it and was shifting the bug by means of Intel’s standardized Intel Platform Replace course of. Intel had scheduled a repair for March, ArsTechnica discovered, however the Google staff’s discovery of the potential escalation of privileges made it a better precedence.

An Intel assertion supplied to TechRepublic by e-mail mentioned, “On the request of shoppers, together with OEMs and CSPs, this course of (the Intel Platform Replace course of) usually features a validation, integration and deployment window after Intel deems the patch meets manufacturing high quality, and helps make sure that mitigations can be found to all clients on all supported Intel platforms when the problem is publicly disclosed.”

How one can defend towards the Reptar vulnerability

Intel recommends that organizations utilizing the affected processors replace to the newest variations. System directors ought to make certain their BIOS, system OS and drivers are updated. System admins can go to Intel’s microcode repository to obtain the microcode and may contact Intel or their working system vendor for extra data.

This potential vulnerability is an effective reminder to maintain all software program and {hardware} updated.

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