As you may have already heard in mainstream publications or on social media, computer researchers have recently found security flaws in the CPUs of most modern computers. These flaws, known by the names Spectre and Meltdown, are the results of design flaws in the hardware which is found in PCs, Apple, networking equipment and more. These flaws have actually been there for years, but until recently were both unknown and unexploited. This security issue affects almost every computer, server, and personal device. The hardware bug allows malicious programs to steal data that is being processed in your computer’s memory, making password managers, emails, messaging, documents, photos and more, vulnerable.
So, what can you do about this?
Be sure that the person, or company, in charge of your IT is updating and patching all the machines on your network. If you are an IT Direct client, we are already on the case, making a plan for each of our clients’ special infrastructure. This will take some time; some of the patches are not even available from manufacturers and vendors yet. As more information does come out, you may find that you need to replace some hardware to continue to keep your systems secure.
Don’t forget your personal devices!
Don’t put off installing any patches and updates you see coming out for your phones, tablets, and personal computers. These will be integral to protecting your personal information.
For the time being, everyone will need to be extra vigilant, with security top-of-mind and, as always, Think Before You Click. Anti-virus software does not protect against this vulnerability, so you cannot count on this software to keep you safe.
Be vigilant, stay safe!