firmware

Tue
17
Feb
John Lister's picture

Report: NSA Hacked Hard Drive Firmware for Spying

The US government has been accused of embedding spyware directly onto hard drives using secret manufacturer information. Russian security software manufacturer Kaspersky Lab made the claims, and stem from its efforts to find and eliminate malicious ... software. Kaspersky says officials appear to have only used the spyware to target specific, foreign-based individuals. Kaspersky says that the spyware is part of an operation controlled by the National Security Agency (NSA) , under the name Equation Group. It claims the NSA figured out how to put spying software in the firmware of hard drives made ... (view more)

Tue
27
Jul
Dennis Faas's picture

Dell Warns of Malware-Riddled Motherboards

Dell has agreed to replace computer equipment that shipped with a data-stealing virus. The company is hoping to deal with the issue before any users suffer at the hand of criminals. Unlike most hacking attempts, which rely on accessing a victim's ... machine through an Internet connection, this incident brought up the possibility of whether or not malicious software was in fact being physically installed on machines at the factory. The issue only involves replacement parts for servers, however. These replacement parts are for computers that are primarily used to host websites and, in business ... (view more)

Thu
01
Apr
Dennis Faas's picture

Hackers Use Network Card Firmware to Deliver Payload

Cybercrime is often likened to a never-ending cycle: just when a security company believes they have found a way to combat one malware-installation method, hackers come along and find a new ways to attack a computer. Thus, it should come as little ... surprise that there is a new hack that attacks network card firmware: software specifically designed to control the network card. This innovative hacking technique (dubbed the "Jedi Packet Trick") works by sending infectious network packets to the network's firewall , which needs to be running a vulnerable network card. Once an infected packet is ... (view more)

Tue
02
Feb
Dennis Faas's picture

Firmware

In electronics and computing, firmware is a term often used to denote fixed programs and data structures that internally control various electronic devices. Typical examples of devices containing firmware range from end-user products such as PCs, ... laptops, netbooks, remote controls and calculators, and even include scientific instrumentation and industrial robotics. More complex consumer devices, such as mobile phones and digital cameras, contain firmware to define the device's basic operation as well as implementing higher-level functions in the future. Firmware Versus Software Technically, ... (view more)

Wed
02
Sep
Dennis Faas's picture

Help! Internet Connection Drops, No Web Access (Intermittent)

Infopackets Reader 'WB2' writes: " Dear Dennis, I have a home network consisting of two computers, using an N-link router. Both computers are connected to the router using a wired connection (not wireless). Problem: the router drops my Internet ... connection from time to time. Shutting off the router and turning it back on after a few seconds appears to solve the problem -- but it's only temporary. Can you help me solve this problem? " My Response: If the problem you are experiencing happens to both PCs at the exact same time, it's a safe bet it's not either of your PCs at fault, but likely the ... (view more)

Wed
01
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

Apple Releases MacBook 'Shutdown' Fix (Firmware)

Last Thursday, Apple finally announced a fix for the irritating "MacBook Shutdown" pandemic. The shutdown problem, which the company insists has affected only a "small percentage" of MacBook owners, surfaced in July after the 13-inch widescreen ... MacBooks debuted. Since then, the problem has generated quite a bit of buzz, and has even led to the creation of the website www.macbookrandomshutdown.com . Since the website launched in August, over 1500 users have registered with the site. (Source: zdnet.com ) Previously, Apple had addressed the quandary by having the affected machines sent in for ... (view more)

Fri
31
Mar
Dennis Faas's picture

Difference Between Software and a Software Application?

Infopackets Reader Pat J. writes: " Dear Dennis, Could you please tell me the difference between an application and a software program? Or are software programs also applications? If so, what do non-software program applications do, and where are ... they located? " My response: Interesting question. There isn't much difference between the definition of "software" versus "application", as the two terms are often used interchangeably in the world of computing. Depending on the wording, however, application can infer how something is used. Let me see if I can explain the ... (view more)

Thu
30
Oct
Dennis Faas's picture

Reset DVD region / country code / zone lock?

Infopackets Reader Louise S. writes: " I recently bought a DVD disc through eBay from a gentleman in Britain. When I tried to play it on the DVD player attached to my TV, a screen popped up saying I was in the wrong region. I then tried it in the ... CD-DVD player (Samsung) in my computer and it said the same thing. My computer, however, did allow me to change over to region 2, which is Europe, but will only allow me to switch back and forth between Regions 1 and 2 a total of 4 times, and then it becomes permanent. I don't want that to happen as only the one DVD is a region 2. Is there ... (view more)

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