Incognito mode in Chrome claims to let users browse the web privately without Google collecting their information
Incognito mode in Chrome claims to let users browse the web privately without Google collecting their information

Google Chrome needs to be updated right now, says security boss

Critical issue has been fixed – but that fix must be downloaded

Andrew Griffin
Thursday 07 March 2019 14:28

Google Chrome needs to be updated as soon as possible, its security boss has warned.

A critical security flaw inside of the browser is being used by hackers and could allow them to break into people's computers. The bug is already under attack, Google said when it announced it, meaning that cyber criminals are already trying to break into people's computers using it.

The issue has been fixed in the latest version of Chrome, Google has said. But that has not necessarily downloaded onto your computer, meaning people may still be in danger.

To fix the problem, open the drop down from the top right corner, go to help and click about Google Chrome. That will tell you what version you are running, as well as allowing you to update.

Chrome should be at least 72.0.3626.121 if it has been updated to fix the patch.

That is the advice of Chrome's head of security and desktop engineering. "Also, seriously, update your Chrome installs... like right this minute," posted Justin Schuh after the bug was fixed.

The vulnerability was related to an error in the way that Chrome uses memory, as part of a tool called FileReader. That allows web apps to read the contents of files that are stored on a computer – useful for a variety of features – and so could be used to break into people's sensitive documents.

The error happened when an app tried to read that memory even after it had been deleted, which opened up the problem. As a consequence, malicious code could be executed and hackers could find their way in through the browser.

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