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Intel hit with three class action lawsuits over Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities

Are Intel really at fault?

Intel hit with three class action lawsuits over Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities

Intel hit with three class action lawsuits over Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities

Over the past few days, a lot of information has become available regarding the exploits or hacks known as Spectre (CVE-2017-5753 and CVE-2017-5715) and Meltdown (CVE-2017-5754), revealing vulnerabilities in pretty much every modern CPU architecture. 

Intel has been hit hardest here, being vulnerable to all three variants, with Meltdown being the most meddlesome for the company due to the kernel-level fixes that all major OS' require to address the issue. These updates are said to harm the performance of Intel processors, though in most cases the impact is minimal. Regardless, this has resulted in three class action lawsuits against the company, alleging that the company was selling products that were "inherently faulty" and that their new 8th generation series of processors were falsely advertised because Intel knew about both Spectre and Meltdown.   

All three complaints argue that Intel did not disclose the issue fast enough, though these claims are ludicrous. Yes, researchers and companies have known about Spectre for quite some time, but standard procedure is to disclose these issues after fixes are available, not when products are still vulnerable. It would have been Insane for these exploits to be revealed by Intel any earlier, as it would have left consumers exposed and hackers with knowledge about how to exploit them. 

One other factor is that the performance impact of software fixes is not as high as was initially anticipated, which means that in most cases computers will not be noticeably slower. While Intel remains the worst affected, the problems posed by Spectre and Meltdown have not created an end of the world scenario for either the company or its users. 

Insinuating that Intel's processors are "inherently faulty" is also misleading, as a lot of the impact has already been mitigated by software fixes and by the same criteria all modern processors exhibit the same flaws in some form or another. Remember that pretty much all of today's processors can be impacted by variant one of spectre. 

  

Intel hit with three class action lawsuits over Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities

 

The fact of the matter is while Intel did know about these exploit before the release of their 8th Generation of CPUs, it would have been impossible to disclose the issue at the time without placing millions of systems at risk. Even then the performance loss that comes as a result of these software fixes is minimal and not impactful on the user experience of the majority of consumers. 

In all honesty, it is hard to see this situation resolving itself any better, as updates are being issued by most major operating systems and the performance impact of said fixes are not having anywhere near a much of a performance impact as early reports suggested. While Spectre remains an issue, it applies to the industry as a whole, not just Intel, making it difficult to see these Intel-specific lawsuits going anywhere. 

What must be remembered here is that these issues have been disclosed and patched long before they became an issue for consumers. No known virus or malware has been known to use these exploits in the past, and thanks to the work of the industry patches are already available for most major OS' to resolve some of the most significant issues posed by these vulnerabilities. 

The three class action lawsuits mentioned in this article were submitted to the United States District Courts for the Northern District of California, the District of Oregon and the Southern District of Indiana. Please follow the links to read each case filing. 

You can join the discussion on Intel getting hit with three class action lawsuits over Meltdown and Spectre on the OC3D Forums

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Most Recent Comments

05-01-2018, 12:07:52

Dark NighT
That didnt take long...Quote

05-01-2018, 12:19:26

AlienALX
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark NighT View Post
That didnt take long...
Does it ever? lolQuote

05-01-2018, 12:22:15

g0ggles1994
Intel in court... again!

Will only be a matter of time before the EU get them in their court as wellQuote

05-01-2018, 12:38:53

TheF34RChannel
Gotta love the US sue everything policy ugh. AMD and the other one are equal 'at fault'. Not a fan of these sue tactics personally.Quote

05-01-2018, 12:43:50

AlienALX
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheF34RChannel View Post
Gotta love the US sue everything policy ugh. AMD and the other one are equal 'at fault'. Not a fan of these sue tactics personally.
Serious? Intel's BS clearly working on you then.

If I were you I would be pretty furious I overpaid for a faulty product (as I am) and not defending them and bashing AMD.

Srs, don't be a Toby.Quote
Reply
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