Google Chrome is warning many users to update their web browsers immediately or risk being hacked. The latest alert comes after a number of recent hacking threats
Image: Getty Images)
Users of Google Chrome have been instructed to update their web browsers without delay and use a hidden feature which could combat hacking.
Though finding bugs that leave PCs open to hacking is pretty common, they are usually easily patched.
Google also keeps you safe from most hack attacks using the Remember This Password feature.
But, what makes this warning more concerning than usual is that two of the problems found by the cyber team at Google have been given the dreaded ‘zero day’ rating, which means that it’s highly likely the bug is already known to criminals and hackers.
Here’s why the latest warning shouldn’t ignored and what you should do to fix it.
What is a zero-day threat?
A zero-day threat or vulnerability refers to a newly discovered software vulnerability and the fact that developers have zero days to fix the problem because it has potential to be exploited by hackers.
Once hackers take advantage of the software security flaw to perform a cyberattack, this is then known as a zero-day exploit.
What does the warning from Google mean?
The newest version of Chrome had fixed eight issues with the software, two of them deemed high risk.
Google has confirmed on its Chrome update page that it’s aware of exploits for these two issues codenamed CVE-2021-38000 and CVE-2021-38003.
Both issues have now been fixed, but only if users update their Chrome browser.
Google confirmed the upgrade and said: “The Stable channel has been updated to 95.0.4638.69 for Windows, Mac and Linux which will roll out over the coming days/weeks. We would like to thank all security researchers that worked with us during the development cycle to prevent security bugs from ever reaching the stable channel.”
How to prevent hacking attacks?
As a user one of the best ways to protect your PC from hacking attempts is to use strong, unique passwords for all your accounts, as explained by Google’s Jennifer Pullman in 2019.
Google also confirmed that combinations of compromised passwords – which means that your password has appeared in a data leak-and usernames are unsafe cause they’ve already been published online.
A step-by -step guide on their website reads: “We’ll ask you to change your Google Account password if it might be unsafe, even if you don’t use Password Checkup.”
What to do if you’ve been hacked?
Getty Images/Cultura RF)
If you think your Google Account, Gmail or Google products have been hacked, follow the steps below to help spot suspicious activity, get back into your account, and make it more secure.
Sign in to your Google Account
If you can’t sign in, then go to the account recovery page and answer the questions there as best as you can.
Review your account activity
- To do this, first go to your Google account
- Select Security on the left navigation panel
- Then on the Recent security events panel select Review Security events and check for any suspicious activity:
- If you find activity that didn’t come from you, select No, it wasn’t me. Then, follow the steps on the screen to help secure your account.
- If you did the activity, select Yes. If you still believe someone else is using your account, find out if your account has been hacked.
Take more security steps
Make your account even more secure using steps like 2-step verification and installing a more secure browser.