Google can now scan your firmware for viruses and malware

Chris Scott Barr - Jan 29, 2016
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Google can now scan your firmware for viruses and malware

When your computer gets a virus or some malware, you'll generally run some sort of antivirus scan to get rid of it. And that's all well and good, as long as the malicious code is contained somewhere on the hard drive of your machine. But what happens when the infection is somewhere deeper?

Thankfully, I've never come across a single case of malware in a system's firmware. You might even think that such a thing is nearly impossible. Unfortunately, it is very possible to do, and can go undetected for a very long time. But Google is on the case, and they've released a new tool that should help prevent malware from ever reaching your computer's firmware.

If you head over to Google's VirusTotal page, you'll find that you can now upload a firmware image to be scanned. The service will then let you know if it contains any known malware, or if there is anything questionable that they can't readily identify as such.

It's pretty rare that you would ever find anything using this tool. However, if you're updating your firmware from a less-than-reputable source, it wouldn't hurt to run it through VirusTotal first.

VIA: PC World