Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

Trei, Peter ptrei at
Thu Feb 3 08:51:57 PST 2005

> On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Trei, Peter wrote:
> > Seeing as it comes out of the TCG, this is almost certainly
> > the enabling hardware for Palladium/NGSCB. Its a part of
> > your computer which you may not have full control over.
> Please stop relaying FUD. You have full control 
> over your PC, even if this one is equiped with 
> a TCPA chip. See the TCPA chip as a hardware 
> security module integrated into your PC. An API 
> exists to use it, and one if the functions of 
> this API is 'take ownership', which has the effect of
> erasing it and regenerating new internal keys.

Congratulations on your new baby.

Working in the security business, paranoia is pretty
much a job requirement. "What's the worst that could 
happen?" is taken seriously.

The best that can happen with TCPA is pretty good -
it could stop a lot of viruses and malware, for one

But the worst that can happen with TCPA is 
pretty awful.

It could easily be leveraged to make motherboards
which will only run 'authorized' OSs, and OSs
which will run only 'authorized' software.

And you, the owner of the computer, will NOT
neccesarily be the authority which gets to decide
what OS and software the machine can run.

If you 'take ownership' as you put it, the internal
keys and certs change, and all of a sudden you
might not have a bootable computer anymore.

Goodbye Linux.
Goodbye Freeware.
Goodbye independent software development.

It would be a very sad world if this comes
to pass.

Peter Trei

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