Computer virus cripples top Apple supplier TSMC

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Apple supplier, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. had to close several of its factories last night after a computer virus affected the systems.

A virus on Friday evening nearly shut down TSMC production, Bloomberg reports, with 80% of the fabrication tools having been affected.

TSMC is the exclusive provider of the A12 chips that will power all of this year's iPhones and new iPad Pros.

"Data integrity and confidential information were not compromised".

It's not clear how many lost days of production the virus has caused TSMC, nor the implication it will have on Apple given that TSMC is the sole manufacturer of its custom chips.

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TSMC, short for Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, is the main manufacturer of processors for Apple's (AAPL) iPhones and iPads. Apparently, a "misoperation" during the installation of a new tool allowed the virus to spread to the entire network as soon as the new device was hooked up to it. The company said it was confident shipments delayed in the third quarter will be recovered in the fourth quarter 2018, and maintained its forecast of high single-digit revenue growth for 2018 in USA dollars given on July 19, 2018.

The company did not respond to a Reuters request for comment on whether the computer virus impacted its weekend production.

Known by the abbreviation of TSMC, the company said that it had restored most of its fabrication tools and that it expected to be back at full capacity Monday local time, according to Bloomberg. It plans to make up for missed shipments in the fourth quarter, however, and remains hopeful that it won't be too hurt by the incident.

Chief Executive Officer C.C. Wei had said TSMC's sales will rise this year by a high single-digit percentage in USA dollar terms, down from an already reduced projection of about 10 per cent.

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