Intel to slap hardware lock on Management Engine code to thwart downgrade attacks

From version 12 onward, ME-equipped chips will defend against patch rollbacks

By Thomas Claburn

Intel’s Coffee Lake and Cannon Lake x86 processors can be fortified by computer manufacturers to prevent in hardware attempts to downgrade, exploit and potentially neuter Chipzilla’s built-in creepy Management Engine.

In June, Positive Technologies security researchers Mark Ermolov and Maxim Goryachy privately reported to Intel a brace of exploitable bugs – CVE-2017-5705, 5706, and 5707 – in the powerful Management Engine’s firmware.

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