Cybercriminals Can Disrupt Electric Power to Leak Information from Intel Chips

Cybercriminals, Electric Power, Intel Chips, Plundervolt, Hackers, Undervolting, IEEE Security and Privacy

Plundervolt, a new cyber threat, is allowing attackers access to sensitive information by messing with the voltage of Intel chips. Hackers can expose the secrets by cutting the power and disrupting the flow of electricity to the security systems.

The drop in voltage is known as ‘undervolting’. It allows legitimate users to save power when they don’t need maximum performance.

Two teams of researchers have found this technique. Flavio Garcia, a computer scientist at the University of Birmingham, says, “Writing to memory takes power”. He and his team will present the Plundervolt research at IEEE Security and Privacy in 2020. He added, “So for an instant, you reduce the CPU voltage to induce a computation fault.”