Intel has officially addressed concerns of a CPU flaw that came to light recently, and it says that things are not as bad as reports made them out to be.
Recent news has indicated that Intel CPUs made in the past decade come with a severe design flaw that could compromise the security of protected kernel areas. Reports noted that this flaw only affects Intel CPUs and that fixing it would deal a heavy blow to a PC's performance, slowing it down by up to 30 percent. Windows, Linux, and macOS systems are affected.
Intel CPU Flaw: Reports Got It Wrong
It was believed that this severe CPU flaw would allow any user programs to access data from a system's protected kernel memory, including login keys, various passwords, or other files. No specific information was available since Intel kept things under wraps, but the chipmaker has now issued an official statement to clarify things and ease concerns on the matter.
First of all, Intel says that the exploits likely can't corrupt, modify, or delete data. Secondly, the company says that reports claiming that the exploits stem from a "flaw" or a "bug" and that they're only found in Intel products are simply incorrect. Intel adds that analysis conducted so far indicates that many PC types with various CPUs and operating systems could be vulnerable to these exploits.
Intel Promises Fix For CPU Exploits
"Intel is committed to product and customer security and is working closely with many other technology companies, including AMD, ARM Holdings and several operating system vendors, to develop an industry-wide approach to resolve this issue promptly and constructively," the company explains.
To address and patch these exploits, Intel has already started rolling out firmware and software updates. Moreover, the company also contradicts earlier reports that the fix would translate to a performance drop of up to 30 percent.
Moreover, Intel says that any impact on performance would depend on the workload, and average PC users should not even notice any significant slowdown. Any impact the fix may have on performance will be mitigated in time, the company adds.
Incorrect Media Reports Prompt Early Statement
Intel further states that it planned to address this issue publicly next week when it had more firmware and software updates ready because it wanted "responsible disclosure." However, incorrect media reports prompted the company to make an early statement to refute the claims and shed some light on the matter.
Lastly, Intel recommends installing any updates as soon as they become available. The chipmaker is confident that it has the world's most secure products, and it will collaborate with its partners, including Microsoft, to ensure that the fixes are as secure as they get.