May. 9th, 2015

thewayne: (Cyranose)
A computer contains a CPU, the central processing unit that handles all of the calculations needed to run the operating system and whatever software that you're running. Lots of computers these days also have GPUs, graphics processing units that handle the high-res graphics that lots of modern games require.

Well, the people who write malware have gotten a step up on security researchers by finding a way to hide malware inside a GPU. The problem is that no security tools are designed to look inside the operations of a GPU, so for the time being, until the security tools are updated to cope with this new type of threat, this problem is undetectable.

The thing that I find interesting is that people have been using GPUs for advanced computation for ages. Bitcoin mining, password attacks, etc. We've known how to program GPUs for non-graphic processing, it seems obvious to me that malware authors would eventually figure out a way to leverage it to compromise the host computer.

I also find it interesting that they first threw their attack against Linux, rather than Windows. I wonder how long before it's in the Microsoft environment.

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