Google wants you to update your Chrome browser to deploy a new wave of software fixes to patch some security flaws.
A software update is being rolled out over the coming days and weeks for Chrome on PCs, Macs and Linux, and other browsers that use Google code such as Microsoft Edge, Google said in a blog post dated April 26.
Among the 30 security fixes are seven deemed high level threats. Google doesn’t break out specifics on the details of the software bugs being addressed – or potential hackers using them – until most users have updated the fixes.
Such software updates happen regularly, but this one is alarming enough to warrant users’ immediate attention, says Lotem Finkelstein, director of cyber intelligence and research for Check Point Software Technologies, headquartered in San Carlos, California and Tel Aviv, Israel.
Google:Users can remove phone numbers, addresses from search results
Apple earnings:Tech giant reports strong earnings but warns of supply shortages and COVID shutdowns ahead
“Overall, Google keeps high standards for security and the safety of its users, but that alone is not enough and we, the end users, need to make sure we are using their most updated fixes,” he told USA TODAY.
Security professionals – and even President Biden – have recommended Americans be on alert for an increase in cyberattacks, some coming from Russian retaliation for U.S. assistance to Ukraine. That means being on alert for phishing attempts, which try to get you to click on links that could steal personal data or install malware, and using strong passwords.
Google also recently noted an increase in zero-day attacks – software weaknesses spread among hackers before developers can create a fix – in another blog post from March 10.
In addition to keeping your browser software up to date, Check Point Software recommends you avoid unfamiliar websites and clicking on links from unknown sources. Especially look for links that may have a company name you recognize, but have a suspicious URL or end with something other than .com.
“The cyber threat landscape expends all the time, new threat actors join constantly and hackers acquire new skills as we speak,” Finkelstein said. “We see an all-time high in cyber attacks, more than 50% vs. last year, so it is only natural that we see an increase in zero-days. We expect it to keep on growing.”
How to update your Chrome browser
- On your computer, open Chrome.
- At the top right, click the three vertical dots
- Click Help >About Google Chrome.
- Click Update Google Chrome.
- Click Relaunch.
Follow Mike Snider on Twitter: @mikesnider.