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Chips & Salsa Black Hat 2022 Recap

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Hi everyone,

Last week we took Chips & Salsa on the road for Black Hat 2022 and had some great conversations with folks doing amazing research and a discussion with the folks from the Zero Day Initiative that have broad industry implications. Here’s a summary:


Chips & Salsa Episode 24 – Alex Matrosov Black Hat 2022

We asked Alex, Founder and CEO of Binarly, to give us an overview of his Black Hat 2022 talk titled "Breaking Firmware Trust From Pre-EFI: Exploiting Early Boot Phases". Continuing on from our discussion with Alex and Intel’s Vincent Zimmer in episode 22, Alex emphasizes his observation that EFI has a large potential attack surface with over 6 million lines of code and that the supply chain overall needs to ramp up capabilities around Secure Lifecycle Development (SDL) and vulnerability management.


For more information related to this topic, please see:

Intel NUC Laptop Kit Advisory INTEL-SA-00712

Recommended security update for INTEL NUC products


Chips & Salsa Episode 25 – AEPIC LEAK Black Hat 2022

On August 9, 2022, Intel released INTEL-SA-00657 to address the issue publicly reported as AEPIC LEAK. In this episode of Chips & Salsa, we talk to academic researchers Pietro Borrell (Sapienza University of Rome) and Andreas Kogler (Graz University of Technology), who reported this issue to Intel through our bug bounty program. It was great to hear their positive feedback about working with Intel on the public disclosure of this update, get an overview of their Black Hat talk titled “Architecturally Leaking Data from the Microarchitecture”, and some insights into possible future research.


For more information related to this topic, please see:

Intel Processor Advisory INTEL-SA-00657

Related Intel technical paper, Stale Data Read from xAPIC


Chips & Salsa Episode 26 – VUSec Black Hat 2022

Pietro Frigo and Enrico Barberis, both PhD students from VUSec, give us an overview of their talk titled “A Dirty Little History: Bypassing Spectre Hardware Defenses to Leak Kernel Data”. Again, it was great to hear positive feedback about working with Intel on the mitigation and disclosure of this issue back in April 2022. Intel released INTEL-SA-00598 to address it which according to Enrico, “was very effective because it was eradicating our attack tools entirely”. They also expressed their appreciation for being able to work directly with Intel engineers and the importance of being in alignment on the mitigation.


For more information about this topic, please see:

Intel Processor Advisory INTEL-SA-00598

Related Intel technical paper, Branch History Injection


Chips & Salsa Episode 27 - Tunable Replica Circuits Black Hat 2022

August 11, 2022, Intel introduced new protections against certain physical attack threats. Ahead of their Black Hat talk about this technology called Tunable Replica Circuit (TRC), Intel’s Daniel Nemiroff and Carlos Tokunaga give us an overview of TRC and the types of physical threats it protects against.


Chips & Salsa Episode 28 – ZDI, Calculating Risk in an Era of Obscurity

In this episode, we go outside of our normal topics of focus to talk to Dustin Childs and Brian Gorenc from Trend Micro’s Zero Day Initiative (ZDI), about the risks of intermittent patch quality across the industry. Based on 17 years of coordinating almost 10,000 vulnerability disclosures, ZDI’s analysis of initial patch quality is that there is a large percentage of patches that do not effectively mitigate the reported vulnerability. As a result, ZDI has announced new vulnerability disclosure timelines that potentially have broad industry impact.



About the Chips & Salsa video series:

Chips and Salsa is a regular video series with hosts Jerry Bryant and Christopher “CRob” Robinson.  The videos cover such topics as vulnerability disclosures, security incident response, security assurance practices, security technologies with thought-provoking interviews with subject matter experts from Intel and across the security technology spectrum.




Jerry Bryant
Sr. Director of Security Communications and Incident Response
Intel Product Assurance and Security

About the Author
Intel Product Assurance and Security (IPAS) is designed to serve as a security center of excellence – a sort of mission control – that looks across all of Intel. Beyond addressing the security issues of today, we are looking longer-term at the evolving threat landscape and continuously improving product security in the years ahead.