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Security & privacy

Update your browser now to keep your computer from being hijacked

There are tons of security issues circulating for many big tech companies right now. Microsoft has released a critical patch for Windows Defender, and Samsung phones have been plagued with a new privacy bug.

Now, there are new reports that internet browsers like Chrome, Edge and Firefox have several vulnerability issues. Tap or click here to read about a hacker who exposed 99% of all Parler messages and posts, including location data.

While Google’s Chrome and Microsoft’s Edge have a different programming flaw to Mozilla’s Firefox, all three are susceptible to remote hacking. Keep reading to find out what your next move is to stay protected.

Google’s Chrome and Microsoft’s Edge browser

Google’s Chromium technology forms the backbone for the Chrome browser and also Microsoft’s Edge. In the latest patch notes, Google details that the update fixes 16 security flaws, all rated high in severity.

RELATED: Use a PC? This scary new malware can hijack your browser

The most serious of the flaws is CVE-2020-15995 and was reported to Google by Tencent Security Xuanwu Lab. If left unpatched, the bug would have created an opening for an attack to take control of your computer. That’s why it’s critical you update your Chrome browser ASAP.

How to update your Chrome browser:

  • Open the Chrome browser.
  • On the upper right-hand side of your screen, click the three-dot More menu
  • Hover your cursor over Help and click About Google Chrome
  • On this screen, Chrome will automatically check if an update is available
  • The current version of the browser is 87.0.4280.141
  • If you’re not on the latest version, click Update Google Chrome
  • Click Relaunch

How to update Microsoft Edge:

  • Tap the three-dot Main Menu in the upper right corner
  • Hover your cursor over Help and feedback
  • Tap About Microsoft Edge
  • Edge will automatically check for updates and download and install if one is available. Note: You’ll need to restart Edge once it’s updated
  • The most recent version of Edge is 87.0.664.75

Mozilla’s Firefox

Firefox users have been warned by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) of exploit CVE-2020-16044. Rated as critical, users are urged to update their browser to the latest version immediately.

A hacker could exploit how Firefox handles cookies, the little bits of information you leave behind when browsing. The hacker can potentially take full control of your computer. And it’s not just PCs that are affected, but mobile phones and tablets as well.

RELATED: Microsoft Edge just got better – Try this new feature

The update from Mozilla specifically fixes a loophole in Firefox 84.0.2, Firefox for Android 84.1.3 and Firefox ESR 78.6.1.

In a blog post, Mozilla explained, “A malicious peer could have modified a COOKIE-ECHO chunk in a SCTP packet in a way that potentially resulted in a use-after-free. We presume that with enough effort it could have been exploited to run arbitrary code.”

Hw to check if Firefox is up to date:

  • In the top right-hand corner, click the menu button
  • Look for the Help option and click it
  • Click About Firefox
  • A popup window will appear and automatically check for and download any updates

It’s always a good idea to keep your browsers, apps and operating systems up to date. Even if updates come with annoying glitches, it’s better to deal with those instead of the critical flaws that the updates will fix.

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