Intel faces legal action over downfall vulnerability patch unduly
Hardware

Intel faces legal action over downfall vulnerability – patch unduly impacted performance

Intel could face a class action lawsuit after disclosing information about the Downfall vulnerability, according to Tom’s Hardware, citing class action aggregator data. This is not surprising since the problem affects billions of processors and a patch in individual workloads can reduce their performance by 39%.

The class action lawsuit was initiated by the law firm Bathaee Dunne, which is still collecting complaints from owners of vulnerable processors and all the necessary information – the company wants to force Intel to compensate customers for “loss in value, performance degradation, security measures” and other losses resulting from the downfall vulnerability.”

The downfall vulnerability affected Intel processors from the 6th (Skylake) to 11th (Rocket Lake) generations, including Xeon chips based on the same architectures – their total number can actually be in the billions. The manufacturer acknowledged that for some workloads, after installing a patch that closes the vulnerability, the performance drop can be as much as 50%. A series of tests conducted shortly after Downfall’s disclosure revealed a performance loss of up to 39%.

As a result, owners of Intel chips paying 100% of their cost were faced with a choice: keep their speed but leave the machines vulnerable; or to keep systems secure but sacrifice their speed—both options seem uncomfortable. It is worth noting that information about the Inception vulnerability in AMD Zen processors was published on the same day. The patch that shuts it down is also causing a productivity hit, meaning there could potentially be a class action lawsuit for the Reds as well.

About the author

Dylan Harris

Dylan Harris is fascinated by tests and reviews of computer hardware.

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