On TorrentFreak a report that somebody was asking for $100 million to keep some source code from being leaked. The code in question turns out to be Verilog code which is a Hardware Description Language (HDL).

AMD has filed at least two DMCA notices against Github repos that carried “stolen” source code relating to AMD’s Navi and Arden GPUs, the latter being the processor for the upcoming Xbox Series X. The person claiming responsibility for the leak informs TorrentFreak that if they doesn’t get a buyer for the remainder of the code, they will dump the whole lot online.

Verilog has been in use for a time. It is a programing language that resembles C with some of the constructs. A CPU, GPU and even a FPGA are all configured and setup the same using Verilog. In short, Verilog is used in VLSI design as low level firmware.

Now every given product today has some Verilog code as part of the microprogramming for the device. This has evolved over time as much as the underlying hardware designs.

Given the code is very specific to each device, there is no real value for a third party at all. FPGA companies provide Verilog tools to customers to be able to use their devices etc.

Technically this is still a criminal act as corporate surveillance is illegal in the US. The stupid demand for $100 million is motivation for prosecutors.