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posted by chromas on Friday September 28 2018, @07:40PM   Printer-friendly
from the false-flag-to-justify-forced-secureboot dept.

The company ESET, based in Slovakia, has announced finding the first-ever UEFI rootkit in the wild. Once infected with the malware the only option is to reflash the SPI firmware or else replace the whole motherboard.

First spotted in early 2017, LoJax is a trojaned version of a popular legitimate LoJack laptop anti-theft software from Absolute Software, which installs its agent into the system's BIOS to survive OS re-installation or drive replacement and notifies device owner of its location in case the laptop gets stolen.

According to researchers, the hackers slightly modified the LoJack software to gain its ability to overwrite UEFI module and changed the background process that communicates with Absolute Software's server to report to Fancy Bear's C&C servers.

UEFI is an overly complex replacement for BIOS, and is often conflated with one of its payloads, Restricted Boot aka Secure Boot.


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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Bot on Friday September 28 2018, @08:06PM (6 children)

    by Bot (3902) on Friday September 28 2018, @08:06PM (#741514) Journal

    Another victory for the tinfoil brigade, UEFI does nothing more than adding attack surface.

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  • (Score: 2, Informative) by TheFool on Friday September 28 2018, @08:14PM (2 children)

    by TheFool (7105) on Friday September 28 2018, @08:14PM (#741519)

    It does add some quality-of-life things for hardware vendors or firmware-facing OS people. But, yes, it's probably not worth the complexity.

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 29 2018, @09:21AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 29 2018, @09:21AM (#741753)

      I repaired about 10 UEFI mainboards which had the same problem: Part of flash code literally "eaten out". And all time it was made by unplugging a running PC, just running, not updating anything. No idea why computer had to write something into flash during normal operation, but it looks really bad.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 29 2018, @08:34PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 29 2018, @08:34PM (#741900)

    "Another victory for the tinfoil brigade, UEFI does nothing more than adding attack surface."

    Indeed. Is there anyone who did NOT see this coming from many miles away? Anyone???

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday September 30 2018, @04:06PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday September 30 2018, @04:06PM (#742098)

    As a thank you, you might abandon the phrase "tinfoil brigade." Warnings were clearly laid out, based on real-world experience and cogent reasoning.

    • (Score: 2) by Bot on Wednesday October 03 2018, @05:59PM

      by Bot (3902) on Wednesday October 03 2018, @05:59PM (#743519) Journal

      tinfoil division?

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