Google has released a critical update to the Chrome browser that improves its security by patching a zero-day vulnerability that attackers are reportedly already exploiting. The update brings fixes for at least five vulnerabilities, four of which are rated high risk and one critical. After the update, your Chrome browser should be running version 96.0.4664.110.

In the latest release notes, Google said the new Chrome browser version is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. This means that mobile and tablet versions of the Chrome browser are unlikely to include the zero-day vulnerability, but, to be on the safer side, I would recommend you update the Chrome browser on your Android phone, tablet, iPhone, or iPad as soon as possible.

One of the vulnerabilities is rated critical, which means it needs urgent attention. Google said this vulnerability – CVE-2021-4102 – affects Chrome’s JavaScript engine, which can allow hackers to easily inject and execute malicious code on the targeted computer. And since attackers are already exploiting this vulnerability, your personal data, as well as your computer, may be at risk, so installing the new Chrome update becomes essential.

The details of the other four vulnerabilities are scarce, but since they are rated “high” in the release notes, they may as well be efficient in allowing hackers to enter your computer remotely and maybe access your data without your knowledge. Google often restricts such details for vulnerabilities until a majority of users have installed the necessary update.

Here are the four vulnerabilities that Google has mentioned in the release notes for the new security update for Chrome browser:

  • CVE-2021-4098: Rated critical; an insufficient data validation vulnerability in Mojo.
  • CVE-2021-4099: Rated high; a use after free vulnerability in Swiftshader.
  • CVE-2021-4100: Rated high; an object lifecycle issue in ANGLE.
  • CVE-2021-4101: Rated high; a heap buffer overflow vulnerability in Swiftshader.
  • CVE-2021-4102: Rated high; use after free vulnerability in the V8 engine and it has already been exploited.

How to update your Chrome browser

It is a simple process. Just go to the Help or About section of the browser. If there is an update available for your machine, Google will either automatically download it or give you the option to do the same. Once the update is downloaded, just click on the Relaunch button to apply and reboot the browser. Make sure you save your unsaved data because restarting the browser will close all windows and tabs.


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