Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities: All you need to know

Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities: All you need to know

Intel says it has already issued updates for the majority of its processor products released in the last five years. Intel CPUs are particularly affected since the Meltdown vulnerability is apparently specific to them.

Companies like Apple, Microsoft, Google and Amazon are working on updates to mitigate the flaws.

Regarding the speculated PC slowdowns because of the security updates, the impact will be workload dependent and everyday users might not notice any difference.

Google's Project Zero security team, which focuses on discovering zero-day vulnerabilities, says that it identified the serious chip flaw announced yesterday past year, and told chip makers about it at the time.

Meltdown and Spectre were identified by researchers at Google's Project Zero security team earlier this week, and could allow hackers access to all files within an affected device.

While researchers say the Meltdown bug is limited to Intel processors, they have verified Spectre as a problem for Intel, Advanced Micro Devices and ARM processors.

Following up on this week's debacle, Intel said tonight that it is "rapidly issuing updates" for its chipsets that will render those systems "immune" from both recently-reported exploits.

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Intel has vowed to fix two catastrophic bugs that have left nearly every modern computer and smart device vulnerable to being hacked. The company says it hasn't found any reports of the vulnerabilities affecting customers as of now.

It outlined that customers need to patch the operating systems they have been using.

Meltdown and Spectre security vulnerabilities - What are the bugs?

Originally, Intel was going to make these findings public next week, after OS makers had a chance to push out some patches to make things secure. Spectre, the broader bug that applies to almost all computing devices, is harder for hackers to take advantage of but less easily patched and will be a bigger problem in the long term, he said. Before the problems became public, Google on its blog said Intel and others planned to disclose the issues on January 9. Software patches have been released for many operating systems, but the updates could slow systems by as much as 30% according to some reports. Furthermore, Intel has already provided the vendors and developers with software and firmware updates.

"Brian's sale is unrelated", the company said.

The relatively easy-to-implement exploit could give malicious apps a pathway to a device's kernel memory data.

But Intel continues to claim, alarmingly, that the flaws that led to these exploits are not "bugs" in its processors. The company said it believes there "is near zero risk to AMD products at this time".

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