BIOS password definition
A BIOS password is a password that’s set and used in the BIOS (Basic Input Output System) setup. BIOS is a firmware used to perform hardware initialization during booting (power-on startup) on IBM PC-compatible computers. By setting up a BIOS password, a user can add a layer of security to a computer system.
When a BIOS password is set, a password prompt appears every time the computer system is started, or someone tries to access the BIOS setup. This helps prevent unauthorized users from booting up the computer or making changes to the BIOS settings. A BIOS password can lock a user out of their system if they forget it, as resetting it without the correct knowledge or tools can be difficult or even impossible.
See also: BIOS rootkit
BIOS password use cases
- Preventing unauthorized access. A BIOS password prevents unauthorized users from booting up a computer.
- Securing system configuration. A BIOS password prevents unauthorized changes to the system’s BIOS settings.
- Protection against theft. If a computer is stolen, the thief cannot boot up the system without the BIOS password or change its configuration.
- Data security. In conjunction with disk encryption, a BIOS password adds an extra layer of security. It prevents the system from booting from an external device, which could potentially be used to bypass the operating system’s security measures and access encrypted data.