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Can System Bios Carry Infection To Hdrives Or Usb Sticks?


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#1 Guest_RiceoRony_*

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Posted 18 April 2008 - 08:49 AM

Good morning all!

I'm usually the IT guy that tries to help friends with computer problems.

Friends and I are debating whether it is possible for a virus to reside in the BIOS and be carried to a HDrive.

My answer is no because viruses that infect the BIOS usually either remove it completely (e.g. the Chernobyl one from the 90's) or remove pieces of the BIOS which would therefore cause the system to not even boot-up. And even if it was "infected", either manually flashing the motherboard (removing the battery) or flashing the BIOS by updating the BIOS to the most current release by the respective company would solve any issues (since flashing the BIOS removes the old one and writes it over with a new one).

I believe the misconception about viruses in the BIOS comes from people talking about Boot-sector infections, which are totally seperate. Being that the BIOS is apart of the motherboard, and the boot-sector is a part of the hard-drive and is one of the earliest to be read upon start-up.

Therefore, it is possible for viruses to live after a simple reformat by staying in the boot-sector portion of the hard drive and therefore be reinstalled after reformatting a hard-drive. In order to cure that ailment, you would need to rezero the harddrive (writes over the whole HD) before reinstalling the OS.

Anyone agree or disagree?

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#2 xXAlphaXx

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Posted 18 April 2008 - 11:52 AM

Sounds about right. I don't really think that a viral infection can reside in the BIOS and if thier was any probelms with it you could flash it and the "infection" would be gone.

I may be wrong, but that sounds logical that their could not be a permament infection within the BIOS
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#3 garmanma

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Posted 18 April 2008 - 01:52 PM

Worth reading:
http://stason.org/TULARC/security/computer...Favourite-myths
Mark
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#4 hamluis

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Posted 18 April 2008 - 02:42 PM

Nice link, thanks, Mark :thumbsup:.

Louis




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