Intel® Desktop and Intel® Mobile Boards Privilege Escalation

Intel ID:  INTEL-SA-00017
Product family:  Intel® Desktop and Intel® Mobile Boards
Impact of vulnerability Elevation of Privilege
Severity rating Important
Original release:  Aug 25, 2008
Last revised:  Aug 25, 2008
Summary: 

Software running administrative (ring 0) privilege can under certain circumstances change code running in System Management Mode.

Description: 

A new BIOS update is available for select Intel desktop motherboards to ensure proper configuration settings. This change would prevent a malicious user from modifying software that is run in System Management Mode (SMM). SMM is a privileged operating environment running outside of OS control. Malicious software running in this environment could therefore perform any number of operations. Administrative level privileges are required to exploit this issue. BIOS updates to correct this issue are available for all affected Intel branded motherboards.

Affected products: 

DQ35JO, DQ35MP, DP35DP, DG33FB, DG33BU, DG33TL, DX38BT and MGM965TW (Mobile).

Recommendations: 

Recommendations:
While Intel is not aware of any use of the vulnerability described in this advisory, Intel has made changes to the BIOS firmware of affected products to prevent this issue. 
To determine if you are at risk follow these steps:
1. Reboot your system.
2. Hit F2 to enter setup
3. The BIOS version will be on the first setup page displayed.
4. Look at the first portion of the BIOS version. For example - JOQ3510J.86A.0708.2007.1102.0118.
5. Then look at the date string section - JOQ3510J.86A.0708.2007.1102.0118.
6. If your BIOS has one of the numbers listed in the first section below and the date code section is older you need to update your BIOS.
For the Intel products listed in the Affected Products table, Intel has made available updated BIOS firmware per the table below. The updated BIOS firmware is available at http://support.intel.com. From this web page select 'Download Center'. On the 'Search Downloads' line, enter the affected product name (for example DG33BU) and click search. Click on the found product, select your operating system and click 'Go'. Next click on the BIOS title, then follow the instructions on the download page for downloading and installing the BIOS update. Several options are available. For detailed instructions on updating your BIOS refer to http://www.intel.com/support/motherboards/desktop/sb/CS-022312.htm.
Available BIOS Updates:

DQ35JO
JOQ3510J.86A.0942.2008.0807.1958
DQ35MP
JOQ3510J.86A.0942.2008.0807.1958
DP35DP
DPP3510J.86A.0484.2008.0805.2031
DG33FB
DPP3510J.86A.0484.2008.0805.2031
DG33BU
DPP3510J.86A.0484.2008.0805.2031
DG33TL
DPP3510J.86A.0484.2008.0805.2031
MGM965TW (Mobile)
TW96510J.86A.1157.2008.0730.1429
D945GCPE
PE94510M.86A.0065.2008.0801.1803
DX38BT
BTX3810J.86A.1814.2008.0807.2334

Acknowledgements: 

Intel would like to thank Rafal Wojtczuk and Joanna Rutkowska from Invisible Things Lab, http://invisiblethingslab.com, for working with us.

Revision history: 

Revision
Date
Description
1.0
25-August-2008
Initial Release


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