Technical Advisory – Meltdown and Spectre

Technical Advisory – Meltdown and Spectre

There have been a lot of reports, articles and even conflicting statements in the news about substantial security issues now known as Meltdown and Spectre.

In the simplest of terms, these are two hardware flaws that affects nearly every computer and device out there, primarily impact Intel based computers.

While there is a lot of valuable news information available, we wanted to share some basics with you. Rest assured, at DataVizion we stay ahead of evolving security risks, capacity requirements and performance demands that can impact your business.

What It Is

Cyber security experts have discovered chip design flaws in computer processors that could allow access to your sensitive information such as passwords on computers, servers and smartphones.

Company’s (Microsoft, Apple, Google, etc) that develop the operating systems for these impacted systems are taking steps to release patches that prevent the vulnerability from being exploited by hackers; however, even if all updates are made, many devices will remain exposed.

What It Does

The Meltdown and Spectre flaws may have serious implications for users as it allows hackers to access important information such as passwords or the encryption keys held in a device’s memory.

Meltdown allows a program running on a computer to break into an operating system’s central memory, accessing data it shouldn’t be.

Normally, this could be addressed using the software updates being rushed out. However, Spectre makes it possible for a program running on a chip to access data in a separate program, without any need to call on the operating system.

What You Can Do Now

Users should make sure to install all applicable patches once released from Microsoft and/or Apple. Once the patch is released, those customers who are subscribed to DataVizion’s patching services will receive the patch and have it deployed automatically and managed by DataVizion. Any other users/customers will have to ensure that their systems are patched or contact Datavizion for assistance for additional help.

What We’re Doing About It

DataVizion is committed to ensuring our customers have the latest and greatest cyber security protections in place. For questions about this or to learn more about our patching/security services, please feel free to reach out to your account manager.