With researchers announcing the two major computer security flaws, the world now lives in fear of hackers taking advantage of the situation. No reports of exploiting yet, but, who knows when it’ll happen? It’s just a matter of time.
The big tech giants are already scrambling to issue fixes of the problem before it affects their consumers.
The two cybersecurity flaws, named Meltdown and Spectre are said to affect computers and other electronic gadgets made in the last two decades, and especially those using Intel and ARM processors.
Researchers responsible for the findings have already proved that Meltdown flaw could be used to breach the security of your device. As for Spectre, the flaw is more complicated and a bit difficult for hackers to take advantage of.
As the security flaws have just been announced, there are a lot of unknowns, and protecting a Windows computer is kind of complicated at the moment. Big tech giants like Google, Microsoft, and Mozilla are already issuing their browsers with security patches.
The latest version of Mozilla (Firefox 57) comes with a fix, as well as the latest version of browsers Edge and Internet Explorer to protect Windows 10 users from Meltdown. Google is said to issue a fix for the newest version of Chrome coming out on January 23rd.
Apple is yet to comment on how it plans on protecting its MacOS and Safari Browser users from the deadly security flaw.
If you’re using Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Edge on Windows, the only thing you need to do is to accept the latest version of each of the browsers.
Microsoft has issued a security patch through the updated version of the Windows OS, but it makes things a bit complicated, as users with a third party Antivirus running on their computers, this security patch will not be visible in their machines. Computer security experts have tried to put together a list of the supported Antivirus, but have not achieved any tangible results.
For computers using Intel processors, which makes up to 90% of world computers, there is a requirement for firmware protection supplied by the Original Equipment Manufacturers. The OEMs will need to release the firmware updates on their support websites together with their required support information.
If you built your PC by yourself, you would have to visit your OEM supplier for the relevant fixes.
For those using a Windows-powered PC, you need to make sure that your computer is running on the latest version of the Windows 10 OS and BIOS updates from your computer manufacturer.
Step by Step Guide to Protect Your PC against Meltdown
- Update to the latest version of Chrome or Firefox 57
- Check for the most recent Windows and install KB4056892 on Windows 10
- Check for support information from your computer’s Original Equipment Manufacturer support website and apply the firmware update ASAP
The above steps will protect your PC against the Meltdown security flaw. There is no known fix for Spectre yet, but the experts say that it is difficult for hackers to take advantage of the issue.