Ignoring persistent software or hardware vulnerabilities has its consequences, as ASUS is discovering in the wake of the ShadowHammer backdoor exploit of its PC update utility.
Security issues with the ASUS Live Update utility, which is claimed to have been used in a supply chain attack by a nation-state, were highlighted as far back as 2016, with a security analysis of OEM updaters by three researchers from the firm Duo Security slamming the Taiwan-based firm over its lax approach to updating.
Duo Security's Darren Kemp, Chris Czub and Mikhail Davidov wrote in their study: "ASUS appears to be one of the worst OEMs we looked at, providing attackers with functionality that can only be referred to as remote code execution as a service.
"The 'Asus Live Update' software contains no security features whatsoever, allowing for easy exploitation. Oh yeah, we should probably mention they use this atrocity to push out BIOS updates too."