CBS Intelligence Centre

January 18, 2018

Computer Chip Flaws: What You Need To Know

computer chip flaw


As we know, computer hackers work daily to develop new advanced programmes and software in order to attack our data systems and devices, including our mobile phones. Every day, nearly one million new malware threats are released which could potentially harm our digital networks. Despite the best efforts of those whose job it is to counteract computer hackers, sometimes these breaches do happen. Recent news on computer chip flaws has revealed how this is making it easier for them.

Tech experts have discovered two previously unknown and potentially devastating computer chip flaws now known as ‘Spectre’ and ‘Meltdown.’ These flaws leave chips vulnerable, and hackers are then able to take advantage of them. Tech firms have been aware of the problem for some time, and are calling the discovery of these issues disastrous. Even without these newly discovered problems, cybersecurity is considered by all experts as being more important than ever.

Tech experts and developers are doing all they can to fix this current issue as quickly as possible, initially hoping to do so before the problem became public knowledge. In the meantime, there are things that we can do to give added protection to our data and devices.


What Are Computer Chip Flaws?


The first flaw, known as ‘Spectre,’ has been found in computer chips made by Intel, AMD and ARM. ‘Meltdown’ on the other hand appears to only affect chips made by Intel, who have produced between 80 and 90% of all computer chips. Each flaw has been found in chips made as far back as 1995.

This obviously creates a huge number of vulnerable systems and devices, so we advise that everyone puts an extra security measure in place. Data centres are amongst those that could be the most vulnerable to flaws and potential hacking, including those hosting cloud-based services.


How Do The Breaches Happen?


Researches into the effects of ‘Spectre’ and ‘Meltdown’ say that the flaws can potentially allow criminal hackers access to computer memory, as well as password and encryption keys. This leaves all private and sensitive data open to theft.


Counteracting Spectre and Meltdown


Already, tech firms have managed to develop a fix in the form of software patches, but some computers could take longer than others to be patched. Intel and ARM computers are due to receive the patch imminently, while AMD claim that there is currently no risk to any of their chips. However, it’s recommended that precautions are still taken, since malicious software developers will always be looking for a way around any new levels of protection and changes in software.


Protecting Your Data – Steps To Take


  • Make sure your computer chips have been updated with the necessary software patches by the chip developers. Doing this may be complicated and depends on which companies were involved in the production of your device, but advice can be found online on which paths to take.
  • Make sure you are have installed the latest updates of any of your security or antivirus software.
  • Keep up to date with new developments in security technology. There are a number of new technologies becoming available which have the potential to provide top-class security, including artificial intelligence and biometric identification.
  • Consider Security as a Service in order to have continual access to expert support.

Seeking Further Advice


If you are concerned that your systems may contain the Spectre or Meltdown computer chip flaws, you can contact us for further guidance. We advise on all manner of cyber security issues and can offer guidance on the best steps to take to ensure that your chips are as secure as possible.

We also provide security services which give your business 100% support and expert protection 7 days a week. We make sure that your systems are updated, the latest technology is utilised, and that we are always up to date with the latest security threats.

Contact us today on 020 3355 7334 or visit our website to see how we can help you stay protected.