Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Build safety into the very beginning of the computer system

Date:
May 11, 2011
Source:
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Summary:
A new publication provides guidelines to secure the earliest stages of the computer boot process, the so-called BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) that initializes the computer hardware when you switch on the machine.

A new publication from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) provides guidelines to secure the earliest stages of the computer boot process. Commonly known as the Basic Input/Output System (BIOS), this fundamental system firmware -- computer code built into hardware -- initializes the hardware when you switch on the computer before starting the operating system. BIOS security is a new area of focus for NIST computer security scientists.

"By building security into the firmware, you establish the foundation for a secure system," said Andrew Regenscheid, one of the authors of BIOS Protection Guidelines (NIST Special Publication 800-147). Without appropriate protections, attackers could disable systems or hide malicious software by modifying the BIOS. This guide is focused on reducing the risk of unauthorized changes to the BIOS.

Designed to assist computer manufacturers writing BIOS code, SP 800-147 provides guidelines for building features into the BIOS that help protect it from being modified or corrupted by attackers. Manufacturers routinely update system firmware to fix bugs, patch vulnerabilities and support new hardware. SP 800-147 calls for using cryptographic "digital signatures" to authenticate the BIOS updates before installation based on NIST's current cryptographic guidelines. The publication is available just as computer manufacturers are beginning to deploy a new generation of BIOS firmware. "We believe computer manufacturers are ready to implement these guidelines and we hope to see them in products soon," said Regenscheid.

The publication also suggests management best practices that are tightly coupled with the security guidelines for manufacturers. These practices will help computer administrators take advantage of the BIOS protection features as they become available.

BIOS Protection Guidelines, NIST SP 800-147, is available at http://csrc.nist.gov/publications/nistpubs/800-147/NIST-SP800-147-April2011.pdf.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). "Build safety into the very beginning of the computer system." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110511162533.htm>.
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). (2011, May 11). Build safety into the very beginning of the computer system. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110511162533.htm
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). "Build safety into the very beginning of the computer system." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110511162533.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Computers & Math News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-Free Travel

Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-Free Travel

AP (July 23, 2014) 'Ray' the robotic parking valet at Dusseldorf Airport in Germany lets travelers to avoid the hassle of finding a parking spot before heading to the check-in desk. (July 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme

Six Indicted in StubHub Hacking Scheme

AP (July 23, 2014) Six people were indicted Wednesday in an international ring that took over more than 1,000 StubHub users' accounts and fraudulently bought tickets that were then resold. (July 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Reviews Are In For The Amazon Fire Phone

The Reviews Are In For The Amazon Fire Phone

Newsy (July 23, 2014) Amazon's first smartphone, the Fire Phone, is set to ship this week, and so far the reviews have been pretty mixed. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bigger Apple Phone, Bigger Orders

Bigger Apple Phone, Bigger Orders

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 22, 2014) Apple is asking suppliers to make 70 to 80 million units of its new larger screen iPhone, a lot more initially than its current model. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins