Microsoft's Use of Pluton Suggests It Sees PC Owners as the Enemy

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2022-05-13 11:00:07

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Microsoft's next salvo in its apparent war against general-purpose computing may have already begun. In January, AMD launched the Ryzen 6000 CPU for laptops, which is the first to incorporate Microsoft's Pluton technology. AMD's new CPU will provide "up to 69 percent faster video editing, more than double the 3D rendering performance, and double the 1080p gaming performance". The Ryzen 6000 is designed to be used in a variety of laptops. The Verge said, "Microsoft has taken its learnings from Xbox, which has physical attack protections, to try to bring similar protections to Windows PCs. Pluton is essentially an evolution of the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) that’s baked directly into the CPU."

Aside from thwarting a few "evil maid attacks", which might affect one in ten thousand PC's, and protecting against malware in firmware, which is unlikely since it must be designed specifically for each model of PC, I have never understood the need for TPM's. Does businesses' paranoia over the possibility of the PC's of a few key employee's being hacked justify all of Microsoft's TPM development efforts? Ordinarily, I am very much in favor of computer privacy and security, but I can think of at least two other methods of ensuring that business data remains secure: 1) Truecrypt, or Veracrypt for those who are less paranoid than I, and 2) not taking data off of company premises. Neither of these have the potential of taking away the owner's control of his PC.

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