… this is why no usb stick and no cable can be trusted…

Thunderbolt / PCI-Express is having similar issues

“Abstract—Direct Memory Access (DMA) attacks have beenknown for many years: DMA-enabled I/O peripherals have com-plete access to the state of a computer and can fully compromiseit including reading and writing all of system memory.

With thepopularity of Thunderbolt 3 over USB Type-C and smart internaldevices, opportunities for these attacks to be performed casuallywith only seconds of physical access to a computer have greatlybroadened.

In response, commodity hardware and operating-system (OS) vendors have incorporated support for Input-OuptutMemory Management Units (IOMMUs), which impose memoryprotection on DMA, and are widely believed to protect against DMA attacks.

We investigate the state-of-the-art in IOMMU pro-tection across OSes using a novelI/O-security research platform,and find that current protections fall short when faced with afunctional network peripheral that uses its complex interactionswith the OS for ill intent.

We describe vulnerabilities in macOS,FreeBSD, and Linux, which notionally utilize IOMMUs to protectagainst DMA attackers.

Windows uses the IOMMU only inlimited cases. and it remains vulnerable.”

(src: thunderclap.io)







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