The next version of Microsoft operating system Windows 8, which many expect to be released in autumn 2012, has allegedly already been hacked.
Security researcher Peter Kleissner has claimed that he has developed malware for Windows 8 that is capable of remaining in the system's memory even after rebooting (known as a 'bootkit').
In the past Kleissner has developed what he calls the 'Stoned Bootkit', which attacks all Windows versions from 2000 up to 7. According to his web site, it is capable of gaining access to the entire system through its exploitation of Windows.
"It is loaded before Windows starts and is memory resident up to the Windows kernel. Thus Stoned gains access to the entire system.
"It has exciting features such as integrated file system drivers, automatic Windows pwning, plugins, boot applications and much much more."
And now he has claimed on Twitter that the malware, which is small enough to be stored on even the smallest USB stick, can attack Windows 8.
"Stoned Lite's infector is just 14KB in size, including driver and bootkit attacking 2000 to 8. Bootkit can be started from USB/CD."
He later stated that he has already told Microsoft about the vulnerability.
"I informed Microsoft in advance. They have the full source and the paper, and I offered some suggestions."
Details of the software including the full paper will be released at next week's security conference MalCon.