Intel is facing legal backlash over the Meltdown and Spectre flaws that were disclosed in early January. In a new SEC filing (via The Verge), Intel says that it is currently facing 32 class action lawsuits stemming from the flaws. According to the filing, the suits claim users were "harmed by Intel's actions and/or omissions" related to the flaws and are seeking monetary damage.
As of February 15, 2018, 30 customer class action lawsuits and two securities class action lawsuits have been filed. The customer class action plaintiffs, who purport to represent various classes of end users of our products, generally claim to have been harmed by Intel's actions and/or omissions in connection with the security vulnerabilities and assert a variety of common law and statutory claims seeking monetary damages and equitable relief.
The securities class action suits allege that the disclosure of the vulnerabilities revealed that Intel made false or misleading statements about its products or internal controls, violating securities laws. the plaintiffs in these two suits "purport to represent classes of acquirers of Intel stock between July 27, 2017 and January 4, 2018," Intel says.
Additionally, three individual shareholders have filed actions against certain members of Intel's board. "The complaints allege that the defendants breached their duties to Intel in connection with the disclosure of the security vulnerabilities and the failure to take action in relation to alleged insider trading," Intel says. The company also acknowledges that it may face further lawsuits over the matter going forward.
In the wake of Spectre and Meltdown's disclosure, a number of companies, Microsoft and other software vendors were quick to releases patches of their own, but Intel has had issues with the microcode fixes needed to guard against the Spectre flaw. Its initial fix was found to cause unwanted reboots on some PCs, and Microsoft later had to release a patch to deactivate the buggy fix.
Intel has since released a Spectre fix for Skylake-based PCs to its hardware partners, but fixes for other processor platforms are still in the works. If you're curious about whether your PC is protected yet, you can use a tool called InSpectre to see if you're vulnerable. If you're using a laptop or desktop from vendors like Dell, HP, Lenovo, or others, various PC manufacturers also have running lists of which systems have patches available.
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