1. I am reasonably confident in the security measures that I am using
What I meant was that I believe that I have struck a balance between MY need for privacy and MY need for security and the amount of work (and learning) that I have to do to ensure the above. I am well aware that there's no such thing as complete security, nor do I want to strive for it.
You don't strike me as an IT-Sec genius, No Offence
No offence taken, I posted my question so I can hear what others think, and possibly learn new things.
2. ...how likely is ... a backdoor in the intel NICs
I agree 100% with what you've said about this point. But I wasn't asking so someone can tell me the facts, although it would be awesome if someone posted a link to a trustworthy website that discloses information about Intel backdoors... but then again, "trustworthy" can also be a matter of personal opinion. I realize that a lot of the things posted on internet forums are extremely subjective, I'm not that naive to believe anything someone says under the protection of a virtual identity. I want to hear what other people on this forum think, or perhaps even what the Tek Syndicate crew thinks, since I value their opinion.
Follow Security news about confirmed hardware-back-doors & replace insecure parts.
That's your opinion, and I respect that. I would rather go the extra mile and simply not buy hardware that I believe (opinion, not proven fact) is compromised.
So... instead of telling me that I am approaching this problem from the wrong angle, what do you think about hardware backdoors in the Intel NICs? Possible, probable, tinfoilhat nonsense, or you simply find this irrelevant?
EDIT: gave this some thought:
They bothered compromising the the random number generator, because that's more economical than hacking the computer of everyone who encrypts. (The more computers they hack the higher the risk that they get caught & their back door might become known i.e. worthless)
You said that they added a backdoor in the Intel hardware RNG because it was easier (and harder to discover) than hacking the software. Are there any security measures that make more sense to bypass on a hardware level, by using a backdoor in the NIC, than by hacking the software? I am genuinly interested in this.