Hacking Doesn’t Discriminate

Hacking Doesn’t Discriminate

January 11 2018 | Published by Marie Stanley | Industry News

It’s no secret that Cybercrime is on the rise, so it comes as no surprise that the House of Lords is considering amending the Data Protection Bill to make it easier to punish companies who are careless with personal information.

Cyber hacking is only going to grow. According to The Times, the Upper House’s move follows last week’s announcement by Intel that microchips in billions of their computers, tablets and mobile devices, are vulnerable to hacking.  AMD and ARM chips have the same flaws. [Source: The Times ]

The Independent newspaper said that because the flaw is located in such a fundamental part of the computer, there is no way to know whether a machine has been targeted and what data could have been accessed. [Source: The Independent

The main flaw, Spectre, together with the Intel-only flaw, Meltdown, allow hackers to access parts of a computer’s memory that shouldn’t normally be accessible. This compromises sensitive data, including passwords, documents and photographs.

Meltdown has been dubbed:

"one of the worst CPU bugs ever found’" according to Daniel Gruss, researcher at Graz University of Technology and one of the men who discovered the flaw. [Source: The Guardian]

However it is Spectre which is anticipated to cause wider problems in the long term.

Luckily, Apple, along with other technology giants, has already begun software patching, which they say will solve the problem without significant impact on performance. The other piece of good news, according to the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre, is that there is currently no evidence that Meltdown and Spectre are being used to actively steal data. [Source: The Guardian]

Some of our vendors have released information about Meltdown and Spectre:

Forcepoint blog 
Clearswift customers can read about it on their portal