After the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a warning to users that Java installed on most major browsers had been breached by hackers, several websites posted instructions for users to disable Java in their browsers.
DHS warned that the latest update to Java 7 had been breached to allow remote access to an unauthenticated user to run executable on systems with the Java update installed.
Oracle (News - Alert) released a patch to resolve the issue on Sunday, January 13, but despite its efforts, one report stated that, “Apple (News - Alert) quit shipping computers that were enabled with Java, and it was remotely inactivating the Java 7 plug-in on Mac computer.”
Java is installed on an estimated 850 million personal computers, used to read various Web scripts written in the specialized programming language. Regularly subject to hacks, Java received its last breach in April 2012 when “hackers were able to exploit a vulnerability that infected over 500,000 Apple computers with a serious type of malware.”
Despite the fix that was released, experts are suggesting users continue to disable it in Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, Chrome and Opera browsers. Others have simply stated that unless it is absolutely necessary to run a Java script, it’s best to keep the feature in these popular browsers turned off or disabled completely.
Oracle is a global computer technology corporation with over $37 billion in revenue (2011). Based in Redwood City, California, the company acquired Java from its acquisition of Sun Microsystems (News - Alert) in January 2010.
While this is said to be the largest security breach of any Mac operating system to date, experts at Oracle are determined to keep Java a signature staple of its database and Web technology. As such, the firm will most likely concentrate a significant portion of its current resources around Java, and this recent security threat.
Those concerned about the threat should keep a close eye on the Java website and ensure they have all security patches installed on their personal and work PCs.
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