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Super Micro says audit found no trace of Chinese spy chips on its boards

Vendor opens new investigation to refute bugging claims

Hardware builder Super Micro has delivered another effort to prove to the public its machines were not bugged by the Chinese government.

The US-based company on Tuesday issued the findings of an investigation it says show no indication that its motherboards were ever compromised at the factory level and modified with surveillance equipment.

"After thorough examination and a range of functional tests, the investigations firm found absolutely no evidence of malicious hardware on our motherboards," said Super Micro CEO and president Charles Liang.

Such was the claim made in an October report from Bloomberg. Citing unnamed sources, the article claimed that a small number of Super Micro boards were accessed by Beijing spies and had a small chip placed on them that would allow the Chinese state to spy on targeted companies like Apple, Amazon Web Services, and US government contractors.

Since the story was published, Super Micro has strongly denied its products were ever tampered with, and now the company says it has the results of a third-party investigator on its side.

The hardware vendor also offered a short video showcasing the security practices and policies it has in place to make sure its boards are not tampered with.

Youtube Video

"Because the security and integrity of our products is our highest priority, we undertook a thorough investigation with the assistance of a leading, third-party investigations firm," Liang said.

"A representative sample of our motherboards was tested, including the specific type of motherboard depicted in the article and motherboards purchased by companies referenced in the article, as well as more recently manufactured motherboards."

Super Micro has good reason to refute the article. After the news broke in October, the company's stock plummeted by nearly 50 per cent and, despite support from Apple and others, has yet to fully recover to its highs of earlier this year. ®

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