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[FD] [SE-2011-01] Regarding liabilities in SW / HW (ST chipsets flaws' case)

Hello All,

Today, Security Explorations sent an official inquiry to NC+ operator
regarding the replacement process of set-top-box devices conducted by
the company in Poland (whether STBs vulnerable to STMicroelectronics
vulnerabilities are replaced, whether the replacement process is
required by content providers, how many vulnerable STB's got replaced,
what were the costs incurred by end users, etc.).

NC+ fleet of STB's contains 4 models vulnerable to hardware flaws in
ST DVB chipsets (secret and pairing key extraction making satellite TV
piracy possible [1]).

NC+ is likely obliged to fulfill the requirements for high security of
paid TV content posed by content providers. NC+ however encourages end
users to replace old, vulnerable devices to new models for a monthly

We believe this should not happen (the costs to deal with addressing
security vulnerabilities is a liability of a vendor / STB manufacturer
and/or a operator), not the end user (just think, VW diesel gate case).

Thus our official inquiry to NC+ along a note to the Polish Government
authority responsible for consumer rights (UOkiK [2], which corresponds
to FTC in the US).

This goes along our conclusion expressed during a JavaLand talk in 2016
(slide 53 [3]) after FTC started investigation against Oracle:

"Government authorities putting vendors to order over poor / deceptive
security practices can pave the way for SW liabilities".

The status of the communication will be visible at our SE-2011-01 project


Thank you.

Best Regards,
Adam Gowdiak

Security Explorations
"We bring security research to a new level"

[1] "Security vulnerabilities of Digital Video Broadcast chipsets", HITB Talk #2
[2] UOKiK - Office of Competition and Consumer Protection
[3] Java in(security), JavaLand Conference, Mar 7-9, 2016, Bruhl, Germany

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