I'm looking for the article for a project. It is fairly recent, may have been a news article, or a blog. It in turn might have referenced a scholarly paper.

Anyway, the gist of the article was that because modern computers are so complex, it is very easy to introduce insecure hardware into a process. There was apparently an incident because some laptops brought to an inspection site (maybe NATO or UN) were being used to eavesdrop and funnel logged data to a hostile 3rd party.

The argument was to use Apple II or some other older technologies instead because it is much simpler and more easy to verify if correct.

If this rings a bell with anyone, would really appreciate getting the link to it.

  • 4
    Considering the Apple II was the first computer where in 1980 reportedly a virus was detected, this is maybe not the best possible idea... (apple2history.org/history/ah23) – tofro Sep 14 at 16:53
  • I wonder if it's actually secured, even if it might be easier to verify. But most often, as long as you don't connect it to the internet, any computer is secured. – user3528438 Sep 14 at 18:05
  • 3
    @tofro: Viruses were around long before 1980 and well before the Apple II came out. I wouldn't trust that report. – Chenmunka Sep 14 at 18:09
  • 2
    Multiple paths have been discovered for computer systems to potentially leak data even with no direct electrical or optical connection to the internet. – hotpaw2 Sep 15 at 3:01
up vote 8 down vote accepted

Juice.GS in volume 23 issue 2 had an article "Vintage Verification":

Researchers at Princeton University present the Information Barrier eXperimental II, or IBX II, used to obtain trusted gamma radiation measurements of nuclear weapons.

The article covers why an Apple II can be used to detect fissionable materials, and how the simplicity of vintage hardware along with the improbability of backdoors makes them a good choice.

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