Security flaw exposed in popular computer brand

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Security experts Kaspersky have exposed a security flaw targeting the online automatic update service of the world’s fifth largest computer company, ASUS.

The flaw is estimated to have affected more than one million computers worldwide and took more than five months to be exposed.

The malware installed via the online automatic update service was designed to create a backdoor for intruders in the machines affected.


Kaspersky was able to determine that the malware was programmed for surgical espionage and that it was designed to accept a second malware payload on specific computers.

Unfortunately, due to the server that delivered the second malware payload no longer being active, they are unable to determine exactly what the second payload may have been. 

Kaspersky did mention that the incident was consistent with a 2017 incident blamed by Microsoft on a Chinese state-backed group the company calls BARIUM.

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Written by Drew

Starting out as a week of work experience in 2005 while studying his Bachelor of Business at Swinburne University, Drew has never left his post and has been with the company ever since, working on the websites digital needs. Drew has a passion for all things technology which is only rivalled for his love of all things sport (watching, not playing).
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7 Comments

Total Comments: 7
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    I have just purchased an Asus laptop, and was prompted to update as soon as I turned the machine on. So, just wondering if this security flaw is still an issue and if so, what is suggested to fix or alleviate any problems. I have installed Trend Security.

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    Go here https://securelist.com/operation-shadowhammer/89992/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=us_securelist_Zt0106_organic&utm_content=sm-post&utm_term=us_twitter_organic_Zt0106_sm-post_social_securelist and you’ll find a link to download small file that will check your computer to see if it’s affected by this problem. It would have been easier if this had been included in the article.

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      Thanks Bushbaby for the tip which I ran on my ASUS laptop and was relieved to receive the message “Your machine is not affected”. Then again ASUS Live Update is not installed on my laptop – don’t know why – so therefore have never received an update.

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    Don’t know why the url has displayed in such an odd way, but if you just copy and paste into your browser you’ll get to the right page. The download link is a fair way down the article, just underneath a graph showing % or victims by country.

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    I never really liked the Asus software products. I prefer Dell as a home computer. I have a good game option and I like to play Dota2 on it. This has become my main hobby in the last couple of years. I don’t forget about sites like dota 2 score. This gives me more information about pro-team games.

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    Security researchers have long been wary of Intel’s Thunderbolt interface as a potential security issue. It offers faster speeds of data transfer to external devices, in part by allowing more direct access to a computer’s memory than other ports, which can lead to security vulnerabilities. Team up for real-time 3v3 battles against players from across the world

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    Hmmm. This is pretty alarming isn’t it. I wonder how ASUS will respond to this?

    roofing repair


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