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January 27, 2015

Apple Fixes Thunderstrike and Other Vulnerabilities in Latest OS X Beta

A few weeks ago, security researcher Trammell Hudson discovered a vulnerability in Apple’s low-level firmware that could allow a rogue Thunderbolt device to flash its own code to a Mac’s boot ROM. This type of bootkit, dubbed “Thunderstrike” since it relies on Thunderbolt IO as an attack vector, would be very difficult to remove or even detect.

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December 28, 2014

New Apple Macs Vulnerable to Thunderstrike Bootkit via Thunderbolt

Back in 2011, Apple introduced Thunderbolt, a new I/O technology co-developed with Intel that promised speeds way faster than existing technologies like USB and FireWire. Since then, Thunderbolt has come standard on all Macs, enabling support for high-performance peripherals like Apple’s Thunderbolt Display.

However, security researcher Trammell Hudson has discovered a vulnerability in Apple’s EFI that can allow a malicious Thunderbolt device to flash its own code to the boot ROM (read-only memory). This type of low-level malware, called a “bootkit,” would be very difficult to remove or even detect. Hudson has developed a proof of concept bootkit [...]

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