There are few vulnerabilities that have been subject to the kind of attention and concerns than Meltdown and Spectre. The flaws, built into the design of the very processing chips that power most of the world’s computers, served as a wake-up call to the tech world that speculative, side channel attacks represented a serious, systemic threat to cybersecurity.

Today Microsoft announced it is partnering with three of the largest chip makers in the world – AMD, Intel and QualComm Technologies – to unveil a new security processor chip design for computers and devices that could dramatically reduce the impact of those attacks.

The security chip – dubbed “Pluton” – will “make it significantly more difficult for attackers to hide beneath the operating system, and improve our ability to guard against physical attacks, prevent the theft of credential and encryption keys, and provide the ability to recover from software bugs,” said David Weston, Microsoft’s director of enterprise and OS security, in a Nov. 17 blog post.

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