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posted by martyb on Saturday February 21 2015, @03:46PM   Printer-friendly
from the fishing-for-answers dept.

Reuters reports that the US Department of Homeland Security has advised Lenovo customers to remove "Superfish" software from their computers. According to an alert released through its National Cyber Awareness System, the software makes users vulnerable to SSL spoofing and could allow a remote attacker to read encrypted web browser traffic, spoof websites, and perform other attacks on Lenovo PCs with the software installed.

Lenovo inititally said it stopped shipping the software because of complaints about features, not a security vulnerability. "We have thoroughly investigated this technology and do not find any evidence to substantiate security concerns," the company said in a statement to Reuters early on Thursday. On Friday, Lenovo spokesman Brion Tingler said the company's initial findings were flawed and that it was now advising customers to remove the software and providing instructions for uninstalling "Superfish". "We should have known about this sooner," Tingler said in an email. "And if we could go back, we never would have installed this software on our machines. But we can't, so we are dealing with this head on."

[Editor's Note: For background information on this threat, Ars Technica has coverage here, here, here, and here.]

 
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  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by frojack on Saturday February 21 2015, @06:30PM

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Saturday February 21 2015, @06:30PM (#147834) Journal

    Even if you remove the Superfish crapware from your PC it will still exist in the Restore partition. So if you ever need to do a system restore you get the crapware.

    Well, since Microsoft Security Essentials removes it automatically, and MSE is installed by default, you might actually NOT get it back when you re-install.

    Besides, that restore partition dies with the rest of the disk, and disk failure is the usual reason you'd ever need that partition. So I agree we should go back to requiring a DVD rather than an install partition, but I don't see the re-introduction as an insurmountable problem.

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