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Intel serial number linked to US transaction plan

"Know your Customer" prog could use CPU IDs

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A US government programme which will be implemented in April of next year has been linked to the current furore over serial numbers in Intel's Pentium III. The US government's "Know your Customer" programme requires that all transactions identify the individuals or companies concerned. Because it is practically impossible to be sure of the identity of individuals using IP numbers and the like, that means that the serial number embedded in Intel's Pentium III and subsequent processors could be used as proof of identity by the programme. Two weeks ago, Intel was forced to change its stance on shipping Pentium III parts with the serial numbers switched on by default. That led to a call in the US to boycott Intel chips. (See Big Brother Inside) When Pat Gelsinger, a senior VP at Intel, announced the security plans at the Intel Developer Forum last year, he explained that using a serial number in a microprocessor would provide the level of authentication needed by companies transacting business over the Internet. (Intel Developer Forum coverage) According to Ken Catto, a reader who supplied this information, further details of the US law are to be found at these sites. 1, 2 and 3 ®

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