AMD Quietly Fixed Four GPU Security Issues in its 20.1.1 Driver

/ 2 years ago
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January has so far proven to be a rather busy driver update month for AMD. At the time of writing, we’ve already seen three different update versions launches so far! It seems, however, that version 20.1.1 (released around January 11th) may have been offering more than just added support for Monster Hunter World: Iceborn.

In a report via TechPowerUp, the update actually also came with four fixes for what is being called ‘major security vulnerabilities’. Is this something to be concerned about though? Well, it all depends on how often you apply those updates I guess!

AMD Radeon

AMD Quietly Fixes Major GPU Security Issues

The issue is believed to have resided within the ATIDXX64.dll and through a security exploit, it is said that malicious users could potentially use it to create a denial of service. Even, potentially, remote code execution.

The vulnerabilities are confirmed as follows:

  • CVE-2019-5146 – “AMD ATI Radeon ATIDXX64.DLL MAD shader functionality denial-of-service vulnerability.”
  • CVE-2019-5147 – “AMD ATI Radeon ATIDXX64.DLL MOVC shader functionality denial-of-service vulnerability.”
  • CVE-2019-5124 – “AMD ATI Radeon ATIDXX64.DLL shader functionality constant buffer denial-of-service vulnerability.”
  • CVE-2019-5183 – “AMD ATI Radeon ATIDXX64.DLL shader functionality VTABLE remote code execution vulnerability.”
amd radeon graphics card 5700 MDS

What Do We Think?

Admittedly, given the regularity in which graphics card driver updates are released, you can often be forgiven for thinking you’d leave it for another day or perhaps even just wait until the next one. This does, however, highlight that updating your GPU driver is sometimes more important than you might think.

So, at the risk of a preemptive suggestion, did AMD do anything wrong here? Well, in my view, no. Stating the vulnerability in the driver update notes would only have drawn attention to it. Being that we’re now on 20.1.3, however, it seems about the right time for some disclosure.

The short version, however, is simple. The next time you see an update reminder, you might just want to get it out the way there and then!

What do you think? How regularly do you update your GPU drivers? In addition, do you think issues like this should be disclosed with the update notes? – Let us know in the comments!

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