report on Traeger wifi chip is scary....or hype????


New member
Jan 19, 2021
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Los Angeles, CA
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One of my techie friends forwarded this report on the wifi chip used in my Traeger. Other posts in this forum confirmed the wifi chip in our smokers is from Espressif. Does anyone have insight on this??? Not sure if this report is an equivalent of social media hype or a legit industry watchdog type group.

I can't follow most of the report but these paragraphs don't paint a comfortable picture:

Infected Espressif devices would be a perfect weapon since they have a CPU, native memory, a 2.4 GHz integrated Wi-Fi antenna independent of other system-level services, and the ability download a poisoned update over-the-air. The infected component would only need a power connection from the host device. A similar attack using an intel CPU would not be feasible as the unit lacks the prerequisite independent features native to the ESP8266, ESP32, and similar devices. ICIT Fellow and Cymatic Chief Security and Trust Officer Malcolm Harkins explains, “This risk is the digital equivalent of installing a faulty junction box in your home. Not only is your home at risk of fire, but you could also inadvertently damage every other appliance or device.” The attack paradigm detailed can be conducted programmatically without the need for any additional hardware other than the Espressif device.

The danger of Espressif devices lie in their firmware. Espressif ICs rely on black box proprietary firmware that could be infected with a malicious backdoor prior to distribution or remotely replaced with malicious code. A single malicious insider could infect a firmware update and compromise tens of millions of devices. Moreover, even if Espressif and its personnel were all well intentioned, the 2018 provision in the Chinese CSL should cause buyers to question the integrity of the underlying source code and conduct penetration tests when able.

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