Consumer Alert: Google warns that your device could be at risk. Here’s what you need to do
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — If you surf the world wide web, you likely use Google Chrome to do it. It’s the world’s leading browser, and this weekend, Google issued a warning that sounded dire.
Google confirmed two more serious hacks. These are the twelfth and thirteenth “zero-day” threats over the last year. And yes, zero-day is as serious as it sounds. It means that hackers have found a vulnerability before google has released the fix. That means Chrome users are in immediate danger. And there are a lot of us – 2.6 billion of us to be exact.
And we all use Chrome for three primary reasons: It’s easy. It’s fast, and it’s independent. That means you can use Chrome with any device you use to browse the internet, Windows, Android, Linux, Mac OS. So when Google Chrome is vulnerable to those vicious villains of cyberspace, literally billions of us are vulnerable.
Here’s how you know if you’re at risk. Take these three steps:
- Click the three vertical dots in the upper right-hand corner of your Chrome browser.
- Go to settings – help – then “About Google Chrome.”
- Check the Chrome version running on your computer.
If your version is 94.0.4606.71 or higher, you’re safe. Your Chrome browser updates automatically, and this means yours has already been updated. But this is important: Even after your browser has updated, you’re not safe until you restart it. While Google sends out patches quickly, hackers can still attack even after the update installs. It’s up to you to restart your browser.
Here’s how you restart it on your Mac computer or Windows PC:
- Type chrome://restart in the Address bar.
- Then hit enter. You’ll be able to save any open tabs during the process.
On your Android phone:
- Open your web browser to any page.
- Press the Menu key. Select “More”, then “Settings”.
- Scroll down. …
- Touch each of these three, in turn, selecting “OK” when it asks you to confirm.
- Press the back button until you get back to the web browser.
On your iPhone:
- Open Chrome Settings.
- Go to Privacy.
- Click on "Clear Browsing Data" option.
- Select all from the list.
- Tap on "Clear Browsing Data" button.
- Confirm the reset.
For those of you who haven’t gotten the updated version yet, keep checking. Google’s rollout is staggered, so we’re not all getting the update at the same time.