Crucial BIOS update rolling out for Intel 11th Gen, 10th Gen, and more CPUs, fixes LPE bug

Demo image of a rootkit malware in a CPU
via Sophos

A couple of days ago, Intel updated its security advisory to include two new Local Escalation of Privilege (LPE) bugs that it was made aware of by security researchers. The first bug has been assigned the ID "CVE-2021-0157", and is presumably the more dangerous one since it affects some of the more common CPU families. However, fortunately for Intel, the latest Alder Lake-S family of processors is not vulnerable. The list of affected CPU families are:

  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E Family

  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E3 v6 Family

  • Intel® Xeon® Processor W Family

  • 3rd Generation Intel® Xeon® Scalable Processors

  • 11th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors

  • 10th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors

  • 7th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors

  • Intel® Core™ X-series Processors

  • Intel® Celeron® Processor N Series

  • Intel® Pentium® Silver Processor Series

The second bug with ID "CVE-2021-0146" seems to affect lower-end CPUs like the Pentium and Celeron with the following CPU IDs. Embedded SOCs are also affected and have been classified separately.

CPU IDs:

  • Desktop/Mobile :
    • 506C9
    • 706A1
    • 706A8
  • Embedded:
    • 506CA
    • 506F1

Desktop/Mobile (ID 506C9) :

  • Intel® Pentium® Processor J Series, N Series

  • Intel® Celeron® Processor J Series, N Series

  • Intel® Atom® Processor A Series

  • Intel® Atom® Processor E3900 Series

Desktop/Mobile (ID 706A1):

  • Intel® Pentium® Processor Silver Series/ J&N Series

Desktop/Mobile (ID 706A8):

  • Intel® Pentium® Processor Silver Series/ J&N Series​ - Refresh

Embedded (ID 506CA):

  • Intel® Pentium® Processor N Series

  • Intel® Celeron® Processor N Series

  • Intel® Atom® Processor E3900 Series

Embedded (ID 506F1):

  • Intel® Atom® Processor C3000

As far as recommendations, Intel has advised users to update the systems' BIOS to the firmware version that patches the issue. Hence, users should be on the lookout for when their OEMs or motherboard vendors release the patched firmware.

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