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Old 04-25-2005, 05:30 PM   #1
Bob Russell
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MS Longhorn OS to Store Security on a Chip

CBS/AP are reporting "Microsoft Corp.'s plan to hardwire computer security into a silicon chip rather than relying on software alone will make its debut in the next release of the Windows PC operating system that will ship late next year. The technology, to be described by Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates during a speech in Seattle on Monday, will protect the startup of PCs equipped with a security chip and ensure that sensitive files aren't accessible when someone tries to boot the computer using a portable hard drive or floppy disk."

This may increase security, but it seems that it will also shift the control of security. Not clear what that would mean for freedoms of users to control their data and applications. One advantage is that your sensitive data may remain secure even if the computer is booted from someone an alternative boot drive, like a jump drive.
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:15 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BobR
This may increase security, but it seems that it will also shift the control of security. Not clear what that would mean for freedoms of users to control their data and applications. One advantage is that your sensitive data may remain secure even if the computer is booted from someone an alternative boot drive, like a jump drive.
How is this any different from the "Microsoft Activation" scam? If you lose control of your data, you have to call them to get it back. If their chip has a flaw (and it will, or someone will find a way around it; Microsoft doesn't exactly employ intelligent security experts), you are forced to upgrade hardware to get the fix.

No thanks, stay away from this, far far away.
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Old 04-26-2005, 12:19 PM   #3
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If you want your data safe from floppy/CD boots, encrypt it with something secure. Don't trust Microsoft and hardware to do it. Hardware fails, and many OEMs would just put some cheap crap into it, which WILL FAIL. (Even if it's not cheap crap, hardware eventually fails - it's just a matter of time.)

And then what do you do when it fails? You hope someone's cracked the protection, thus nullifying the entire point of it.
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