[tor-talk] hardware recommendations

Jacob Appelbaum jacob at appelbaum.net
Sun Aug 30 21:49:54 UTC 2015

On 8/29/15, blaatenator <blaatenator at openmailbox.org> wrote:
> Hi all,
> The talk of Jacob at DebConf (especially the Citizen Four Q&A) got me
> thinking about hardware. I know that hardware rng's are suspect, and
> probably AES cpu extensions as well. And if Lenovo openly puts stuff in
> the BIOS, who knows what else might be in there. Also someone there
> mentioned ARM cpu's might be a better bet regarding backdoors (but what
> is that opinion based on?).

Intel has AMT and opaque microcode updates, other CPU vendors have
similar fun hardware features.

Further reading regarding AMT from the FSF:


> There was a mention of a 'sort of' open source smart card product and a
> certain type of laptop brand (but I didn't catch the names unfortunately).
> Are there more recommendations regarding this sort of stuff? Like a
> 'best buy' guide for secure hardware, or ways to work around insecure
> hardware.

This is the hardware and software that I mentioned regarding GnuPG:


This the base of a reasonable Debian ARM system that requires no
non-free software:


All the best,

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