You might be aware of the new vulnerabilities in hardware processors named “Spectre” and “Meltdown”, These are a newly discovered class of vulnerabilities based on a common chip architecture that, when originally designed, was created to speed up computers, The technical name is “speculative execution side-channel vulnerabilities”.
Affected chips include those manufactured by Intel, AMD, and ARM, which means all devices running Windows operating systems are potentially vulnerable (e.g., desktops, laptops, cloud servers, and smartphones), Devices running other operating systems such as Android, Chrome, iOS, and MacOS are also affected,All the customers are required to update their OS and firmware.
How to check if your PC is vulnerable:-
1. Using Microsoft Powershell script
- To begin Press Windows Key and type in “Powershell“,
- Right click on the Powershell option and click Run as Administrator,
- Then type Install-Module SpeculationControl and click enter,
- You may be prompted to install NuGet provider,Type Y and click enter,
- Continue the steps and once the Installation completes,
- Type in Import-Module SpeculationControl and press enter,
- Finally type Get-SpeculationControlSettings and click enter again.
Upon performing the above procedure,if you get true results,they your PC is safe,following is an example of an ideal outcome.
2. Using Free Ashampoo tool
With Ashampoo Spectre Meltdown CPU Checker, you can determine at the click of a button whether your system is vulnerable, The program uses a Microsoft-based check that would usually require complex inputs and configuration work before you’d see results, Ashampoo Spectre Meltdown CPU Checker does it for you and checks both potential attack vectors,If your system is affected, the program will offer further information on how to protect your computer, Ashampoo Spectre Meltdown CPU requires no registration or installation to work.
How to protect your Device:-
As of January 3, 2018, Microsoft released several updates to help mitigate these vulnerabilities and help protect customers,The company have also deployed updates to secure its cloud services and Internet Explorer,Microsoft Edge browsers,Microsoft is continuing to work closely with industry partners including chip makers, device manufacturers, and app vendors,with the installation of latest security patches,Users may notice a decrease in their system’s performance.
1. Keep your Windows upto date
The best way to keep your PC current is to turn on automatic updates, With automatic updates, you don’t have to search for updates online or possibly miss critical fixes or device drivers for your Windows PC,Windows Update automatically installs important updates as they become available.
In order to perform a manual update on Windows 10 PC, Press the Start button, then select Settings > Update & security > Windows Update and then, click on the ‘Check for updates’ option.
2. Check and confirm if the latest updates are installed
Check that you’ve installed the January 2018 Windows operating system security update from Microsoft, If automatic updates are turned on, the updates should be automatically delivered to you, but you should still confirm that they’re installed,An update history is available so you can see which updates were installed.
In order to check Press the Start button, then select Settings > Update & security > Windows Update > Advanced options > View your update history.
3. Installing Firmware updates
Install the available hardware (firmware) updates from your device manufacturer,All customers will need to check with their device manufacturer to download and install their device specific hardware update,You will need to update both your hardware and your software to address this vulnerability,You will also need to install related firmware updates from your device manufacturer for more comprehensive protection.
4. Update your Antivirus
Microsoft recommends all customers protect their devices by running a compatible and supported antivirus program,Customers can take advantage of built-in antivirus protection, Windows Defender Antivirus, for Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 devices or a compatible third-party antivirus application,Users must also ensure that their antivirus (AV) software is up to date and compatible,Check your antivirus software manufacturer’s website for their latest compatibility information.
5. Update your browser
You must update and use the latest version of the browser on your PC,The latest version of browsers will include security patches that help users in enhancing their security,users should also not download any file or email attachments from unknown websites,emails.
After you have installed the January Microsoft security update, you will also need to install firmware updates from your device manufacturer, These updates should be available on your device manufacturer’s website,Antivirus software updates should be installed first,Operating system and firmware updates can be installed in either order.