Intel Corp. confirmed a report saying that its chips contain a feature that makes them vulnerable to hacking, though it said other companies’ semiconductors also are susceptible.
But the company disputed that its products contain a “bug” or a “flaw,” as reported by the technology website the Register on Tuesday.
“Intel and other technology companies have been made aware of new security research describing software analysis methods that, when used for malicious purposes, have the potential to improperly gather sensitive data from computing devices that are operating as designed,” the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company said in a statement.
“Intel believes these exploits do not have the potential to corrupt, modify or delete data.”
Intel’s microprocessors are the fundamental building block of the internet, corporate networks and PCs. The company has added to its designs over the years trying to make computers less vulnerable to attack, arguing that hardware security is typically tougher to crack than software.
Companies including Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and ARM Holdings are working with Intel and operating system makers to develop an industrywide approach to resolving the issue, according to the statement.
Intel said it has begun providing software to help mitigate the potential exploits. Impacts on performance depend on the task the computer is performing and for the average user “should not be significant and will be mitigated over time.”