Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) has issued a warning alerting users to update their chrome browsers on their personal computers as soon as possible as a safeguard against several vulnerabilities.
“Successful exploitation of these vulnerabilities could allow a remote attacker to execute arbitrary code in the context of the browser, obtain sensitive information, bypass security restrictions, and cause a buffer overflow on the targeted system,” CERT-In announced in a notification.
#BeAwareBeware | Always trust the official website of your bank/ service provider. Check for a secure sign (https with padlock symbol) on the website before entering credentials. #CyberSecurityAwareness @RBI @IndianCERT pic.twitter.com/AL1zdDLgJp— Digital India (@_DigitalIndia) March 31, 2022
Google Chrome is the world’s most used Web browser, with 62.78 per cent of users using it to access the Web. Also, all Android phones have a built-in application called ‘Android System Webview’, which powers almost every Internet-based application, including banking apps and others.
Says Amit Das, co-founder and CEO, Think360.ai, a full-stack data science company: “Security builds trust, and trust drives acceptance. For a vast and diversified country like India, payment systems play a large role in shaping financial inclusion. And the security of the financial system plays an even larger role. One of the problems that UPI, Netbanking, and similar mass-market financial technologies must solve is trust – and for that to happen, back-end security and customer-facing online dispute resolution is key.”
So How Do You Safely Transact Online?
Here are a few steps you can follow to safely transact online.
1. Clear Web Browser Cache: Whenever we enter any website, certain necessary cookies and cache gets stored on our device. “Whenever we use our Web browser, a cache file gets generated and stored locally in the temporary Internet files folder. What this does is it stores all the information about what websites you visited, including image and audio files, and cookies, too. So if a hacker wants to access your bank account or any other data, he has to gain access to your browser cache and then he will get to know your browsing pattern and most visited websites, and other data. He can then use this to target you with a Phishing scam or so. Hence, I would always recommend users to clear their browser cache after any kind of browsing session,” said Dewang Neralla, CEO, NTT DATA Payment Services India.
2. Do Not Use Unverified Browsers: Some browsers like Google Chrome, Apple’s Safari, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Opera Mini, and others have certain built-in security measures. But other browsers might not have these. So, it is always better to check for this in the respective browser’s advanced settings, and if there are no security measures built-in, then stop using that browser.
“I would always recommend people to go with recognised and trustable browsers, not because they can’t be hacked, but because they come with various security protocols like SafeBrowsing Protection, Secure DNS over HTTPS, etc, to name a few of the built-in, which other non-verified browsers might be lacking,” says Saket Modi, an entrepreneur and co-founder and CEO of Safe Security, a cybersecurity and digital business risk quantification company.
3. Do Not Download Content Without Checking: Downloading content from different websites is not that harmful in itself, but certain fraudulent websites have embedded hidden malware, Trojan virus, ransomware, or other kind of harmful lines of code in the file, which could compromise with your device. Once you download and use them on your device, they could possibly take control of your device. Having a good antivirus software on your device can help prevent this risk.
4. Do Not Grant Certain Permissions: You might be using a remote access software or screen sharing application for work or other purposes, and a fraudster could try to hack into your device by getting into that software and then taking control of your device.
So, you should always revoke permissions given to the respective remote access application after you are done using them. If you want to enhance your security, then do not use any financial or banking apps on those devices where you have to share your screen or remote access for work or other purposes.
5. Do Not Use An Outdated Operating Software: Every month, Google releases security updates for Android devices. You should always download this update and instal it on your phone. On the PC too, depending upon your operating system, certain necessary security updates are given. Do not neglect those, as hacks might exploit them and gain access to your device, and rob you of your money.