What is Meltdown and Spectre

Written by Matthew Harris on 12th January 2018
Cyber Security

ALERT - Meltdown and Spectre issues 

Intel, AMD and Arm processors effected

 

 

 

 

Summary of what issues end users need to be aware of a few aspects of this issue and how to protect their systems.

 

 

Here is the BBC article

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-42562303

 

There are two security issues that have been detected these have been named as Meltdown and Spectre. The Meltdown security issue only affects Intel based computers whereas the Spectre security issue affects Intel, AMD and ARM based computers. This means that Windows, Apple, and Linux devices are all affected. At this stage there are no known exploits that take advantage of these flaws.

 

The update released by Microsoft may be quarantined by some anti-virus security software and cause some systems to crash (blue screen). To allow the Microsoft update to be detected and installed a specific change must be made to the Windows system by the security software (Sophos, F-Secure, Avast etc.) to tell the Microsoft update system that it will not quarantine the update and cause the system to crash. The update may decrease the performance of some systems, but this will depend on how heavily the system is used. Updates are currently available for Windows 10 workstations, Windows 2016 and 2012 R2 servers.

 

Some versions of Linux have released updates to resolve this issue and more are expected to follow.

 

Google have released updates to Android devices in the latest security updates.

 

Apple updated the MAC system (macOS 10.13.2) and Ipad/Iphones (iOS 11.2)  in December to provide protection against the Meltdown flaw.

 

02392 482556

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sales@mdinetworks.com

 

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