If you have a #Thunderbolt capable computer, read this:


Despite the fancy name, plugging in unknown devices is probably always going to be a huge risk & I honestly can't think of a scenario where you'd be plugging in something you found on the parking lot if you at all care about security.

Now there are of course risks such as having your charger secretly exchanged for a malicious one, but if the attacker is this determined, you probably need a whole new strategy.

Also worth noting that this affects #Windows, #macOS, #FreeBSD etc. as well, it's a general problem with how OSes allow DMA access for performance, not something specific to #Linux.

Seeing the massive performance degradation that #Spectre & #Meltdown fixes could cause, (up to 30% in some workloads), am not even sure their current approach is wrong in the general case. It seems to be a case of performance vs maximum security, pick one.

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So it may end up being the case that we'll need to think about security a lot more explicitly/manually ourselves when performing certain actions, rather than simply relying on the OS to somehow shield us. It seems logical to me that no matter how hard we try, once an attacker has physical access, there's little one can do to stop them.

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The problem here may very well be USB-C itself, which is being overloaded for so many functions, (charging, data transfer, display output/eGPU...), there are USB-C devices on eBay that fry the motherboard for one, but I do have to admit that having one cable take care of multiple devices made my own personal space much less cluttered and convenient, so it's not an easy solution, as always.

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@MatejLach Which is also why "USB condoms" exist - adapters that only allow for certain functions to be used.

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