Nvidia faces data leak after ignoring hackers’ demand to remove GPU hashrate limits


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Nvidia Corp confirmed that some proprietary information and employee credentials were stolen by hackers during a breach last week.

“We are aware that the threat actor took employee credentials and some Nvidia proprietary information from our systems and has begun leaking it online.”

The hackers — operating under the group name LAPSU$ — have been publicly extorting the chipmaker on a Telegram group and initially demanded ransom in crypto but the company did not engage them. After that, they began leaking some of the stolen data online.

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Furthermore, the hacker group is now demanding that the computer hardware giant remove the hashrate limits placed on its graphics cards, or else they will leak sensitive hardware data related to its RTX line of GPUs.

Ransomware or political attack?

Initial media reports about the hack speculated it to be a ransomware attack. There were also rumors that the hack was political in nature and related to the Russian invasion of Ukraine since it occurred a day before the war began.

However, the latest reports suggest the hack was financially motivated, especially after the hacker group went public via Telegram.

Nvidia has now confirmed that the hack did not deploy any malicious malware, like ransomware, and that its operations are unaffected, so customers will not be impacted.

“Our team is working to analyze that information. We do not anticipate any disruption to our business or our ability to serve our customers as a result of the incident.”

The company said in a statement.

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Extent of the breach

According to the hacker group, they have stolen roughly 1TB of confidential data from the chipmaker related to its various software and hardware products.

LAPSU$ intends to release it in batches, unless the group’s demands are met. The stolen data includes confidential software and hardware information on Nvidia’s various products.

So far, the hackers have leaked a 19GB archive of stolen data, which includes the source code of the company’s DLSS technology as well has various employee passwords. The hackers are also offering to bypass the hash rate limiter on GPUs without flashing them for a fee.

Mining has driven up GPU prices to astronomical heights over the past three years and Nvidia is trying to appease the gaming community by limiting the hash rate on its newer hardware. This makes them less desirable for mining without compromising on their gaming performance.

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