back to article AMD dials 911, emits DMCA takedowns after miscreant steals a load of GPU hardware blueprints, leaks on GitHub

On Wednesday, AMD confirmed intellectual property related to its graphics processors was stolen last year, though insisted the leaked files will not damage its business nor compromise product security. "In December 2019, we were contacted by someone who claimed to have test files related to a subset of our current and future …

  1. whitepines Silver badge
    Alert

    And yet, somehow, we're supposed to just trust that no one has stolen, or could ever steal, the Platform Security Processor master keys?

    This should be a wake up call to anyone still willing to blindly trust AMD (or Intel!) for the continued security of their data.

    1. TonyJ Silver badge

      "...And yet, somehow, we're supposed to just trust that no one has stolen, or could ever steal, the Platform Security Processor master keys?

      This should be a wake up call to anyone still willing to blindly trust AMD (or Intel!) for the continued security of their data..."

      Genuine question but when it comes to general purpose computing (every day use cases such as Windows, Linux, people playing games), what, really, is the alternative?

      1. whitepines Silver badge

        I'm biased because I only really ever use Linux / BSD, and use a Power desktop, but the Open Power systems are actually quite good replacements for normal desktops and servers. The big drawback is there are no mobile devices, and of course Windows will not run but I think if you are running Windows the CPU hardware and firmware security is the least of your worries.

        I also have a couple of ARM laptops. They are adequate, nothing special, but they do get the job done.

        1. Claverhouse Silver badge

          Well said !

      2. karlkarl Silver badge

        "Genuine question but when it comes to general purpose computing (every day use cases such as Windows, Linux, people playing games), what, really, is the alternative?"

        Us complaining and boycotting the hardware until AMD and Intel getting rid of sleazy things like PSP and ME

        After all, consumer stuff like Windows and games really doesn't need these in the first place. It is absurd that it is on the i-series of processors.

        I am sad this happened to AMD. I much rather it happened to Nvidia GPUs because they are very open-source unfriendly. It might even spur them to release the open-firmware so that our Nouveau driver can at least function well.

        1. Alan Brown Silver badge

          "I much rather it happened to Nvidia GPUs because they are very open-source unfriendly."

          I much rather people just took them at face value and stopped buying their products until they Did The Right Thing. This current Nvidia fustercluck of binary and open blobs makes maintaining systems difficult, as does "programmer" insistence on using Cuda vs OpenCL, thereby guaranteeing vendor lockin.

      3. 2+2=5 Silver badge
        Coffee/keyboard

        > Genuine question but when it comes to general purpose computing (every day use cases such as Windows, Linux, people playing games), what, really, is the alternative?

        In the short term - nothing, really.

        In the long term: an analogy is deferring building codes that insist on sprinklers being fitted. Nothing much bad happens until something really bad happens. Then everyone says "Why didn't you fit sprinklers?"

        [ Icon - nearest thing to a sprinkler system ;-) ]

    2. robidy Silver badge

      Intel didn't need stuff leaked, you can bypass the login credentials for out of band PC management. El Reg have covered in detail.

      I suspect the "hacker" maybe more of a script kiddie that found something on a naughty employee's PC.

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Facepalm

    "why not just leak it to everyone?"

    Great idea, genius. That way AMD has the perfect reason to sue you.

    Admit it, you never had the intention of doing The Right Thing, you just wanted to brag about what you'd found. And what's with the four copies ? Did you think that you needed to make extra copies in case the main one was taken down ? That's how lazy scum think.

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: "why not just leak it to everyone?"

      "And what's with the four copies"

      git repo forks. You tap a button and you have a copy. Lots of people do this for anything they find interesting on git

      Facepalm icon is about right. Have a tissue to wipe off the foam off your face, and then you can start on wiping it off everything else you've left flecks on.

      1. Santa from Exeter

        Re: "why not just leak it to everyone?"

        Tissues aside are you saying that the guy *isn't* a total scumbucket?

  3. BigE

    Reached out to the wrong address.

    If El Reg wanted a response they should have used the bitcoin address, not the email address.

  4. Luiz Abdala Bronze badge
    Pirate

    Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

    Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

    How many fabs around the world can use such a thing to make a graphics card? How many are Chinese in property? Aren't we talking about 7nm-ish blueprints here? Not world+dog has the machinery to reproduce this thing. Huawei? We are not talking about a VW Beetle here, where everybody that can weld two pieces of steel together or operate a steel foundry can do it.

    On the other hand, PUBLISHING this stuff make a fantastic Right to Repair™ repository. "This +3V signal goes into chip #4654 over there" and stuff. People on the repair business would love some schematics sometimes.

    Yeah, piracy is ugly and all that, they are entirely correct in the DMCA, but the point is ... meh?

    1. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

      Did you really just point out in one paragraph that these are 7 nanometer blueprints that only a handful of companies in the entire would can produce, and then in the next paragraph suggested that people in the repair business would be able to use the information?

      I have never seen a repair shop with tools capable of working at a 7 nanometer scale.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

        I think the point was that if one is setting out to debug a driver, having a good idea of how the hardware is wired up reduces the guesswork.

        There will be proprietary techniques in the implementation that AMD won't have made public though patents or papers that they would very much wish to keep secret from their competitors. I doubt very much a carbon copy is feasible or even desirable.

      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Joke

        Re: Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

        I have never seen a repair shop with tools capable of working at a 7 nanometer scale."

        Well, duh, yeah. You'd need a microscope to be able to see it.

    2. A random security guy Bronze badge

      Re: Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

      China?

    3. Infernus

      Re: Hardware blueprints of a GPU... ok...

      Well someone with past knowledge and technology can do it. Like Raja had no-one in AMD for him. Hacking and stealing can only be done internally.

  5. IGotOut Silver badge

    So let me get this right...

    Some moron hacks into a computer and doesn't tell AMD because they won't admit their mistake and may sue him.

    Then he published them.

    So said Muppet has now made it sure they definitely will sure him as well as adding to their list of criminal offences.

    Not to bright this kid

    1. TheSkunkyMonk

      Re: So let me get this right...

      Still brighter than the guy that setup the system that spewed the data.

      1. whitepines Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: So let me get this right...

        Probably a Ryzen laptop...running Windows, naturally...

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They just gave al this info to China & North Korea.......

    Well done idiot boy.....

  7. Infernus

    Well someone don't want to gets their hand dirty. Intel might be behind it and it makes total sense. Their discrete GPU line-up is massively delayed. Losing CPU market share. I mean why now in decades?

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020