Security flaws put virtually all phones, computers at risk

Security flaws put virtually all phones, computers at risk

An Intel spokesperson told Business Insider that, "Brian's sale is unrelated", and also added that Kzranich "continues to hold shares in line with corporate guidelines".

"Phones, PCs, everything are going to have some impact, but it'll vary from product to product", Intel CEO Brian Krzanich said in an interview with CNBC Wednesday afternoon. "We are working with security researchers and other browser vendors to fully understand the threat and fixes", he said.

Consumers should check with their device maker and operating system provider for security updates and install them as soon as possible.

Technology companies are playing down the severity of two recently discovered security problems with computer microchips, saying there will be no need for widespread hardware replacements to shield millions of devices from hackers.

Late in the day, Intel, Microsoft, Google and other tech bellwethers issued statements aimed at reassuring customers and shareholders.

Intel's efforts to play down the impact resulted in a war of words with AMD.

Google informed Intel in June 2017 when it initially learned about the security flaw, which is now being seen as a trigger for Intel CEO Kzranich to sell a massive chunk of his company shares.

Intel shares have fallen almost 6 percent since the report was announced to when Krzanich selloff was made public.

But the sell-off could draw even more scrutiny now, given the news about the security vulnerability and the timing of when Intel knew about it.

In the statement, the Intel representative said Krzanich's sale had nothing to do with the newly disclosed chip vulnerability and was done as part of a standard stock-sale plan.

USA technology site Gizmodo said Intel had already been hit with at least three separate class action lawsuits relating to the vulnerability.

There are a number of reasons that an executive might sell off large portions of company stock, whether it be for personal reasons like making a large purchase or because they expect the company may underperform in some aspects and would like to cash in before the stock dips.

The sale left the Intel chief with the minimum shares of the company's stock - 250,000 - that he has to be in possession under his employment contract.

The filing showed that the sales were part of a 10b5-1 plan, which was created on October 30, just a month before Krzanich sold the shares. He also said he's "relatively confident" that the security issue has not been exploited and that the industry has been working together for a couple of months to address it.

Well, from where we are looking at the issue, Kraznich's move does raise a few questions.

The world's biggest chipmakers and software companies, including Intel Corp. and Microsoft Corp., are coming to grips with a vulnerability that leaves vast numbers of computers and smartphones susceptible to hacking and performance slowdowns. It closed down $1.59, or 3.4%, to $45.26.



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