In the wake of Meltdown and Spectre security flaws, Intel is now facing at least three class action lawsuits. The complaints, compiled and published by Gizmodo, were filed in Oregon, California, and Indiana by individuals who own Intel CPU-based computers.
The suits allege that the vulnerability, which Intel had learned about several months ago, makes their chips inherently faulty. Intel on its part has helped to provide security patches, but the complaints raise concerns that these patches will hurt their computer performance, and aren’t the proper solution needed to help resolve the issues.
Earlier this week, researchers revealed two major CPU bugs, nicknamed Spectre and Meltdown. The Meltdown flaw is specific to the Intel chips, and strikes at the heart of how CPUs process information. While there are security patches issues to offer a workaround, The Register reported that these patches could slow down PCs by 5 to 30 percent. This lead to widespread alarm, as you’d expect. Intel denied these claims, saying that “any performance impacts are workload-dependent, and, for the average computer user, should not be significant and will be mitigated over time.” Right now, since companies are in the middle of issuing patches, it’s not immediately clear as to how impactful they will be on performance.
While Intel has been plagued with the Meltdown bug, the Spectre flaw is more widespread and could prove to be incredible difficult to fix. We don’t know how serious this bug is and how long it will take to even resolve the issue. Intel has said that it’s now rendered Intel-based PCs “immune” to both Spectre and Meltdown. It shouldn’t be surprising to see more lawsuits being filed against Intel and other manufacturers in the coming weeks.