Wednesday 20 February 2013

Java security fix for Mac OS X released , download it now

Java security fix for Mac OS X released , download it now

Apple today released the update for Java.  This is a part of the standard Apple release patch that updates Java 6, the Oracle has meanwhile uploaded Java 7 on its site.  This update includes a malware removal tool for removing most common malwares.

Readers may recall that there has been a serious problem with Java's security breach code.   The breach code called the Oday was being sold at around $5000.00 at the last count.  This had made all users of Java vulnerable to hackings.  In fact Mac has been hacked just couple of hours earlier, so was Twitter and host of other service providers previously.  Websites of many banks had disabled the Java plugin fearing compromise of users data.  Apple itself had disabled the Java plugin in the Mac computers connected to the Internet since 31st Jan, 2013.  

Now the patch released takes the Java update version in Mac OS X to 1.6.0_41.  While the version 2012-006 has been completely blocked out.  The Apples support page says that, " “This update uninstalls the Apple-provided Java applet plug-in from all web browsers. To use applets on a webpage, click on the region labeled “Missing plug-in” to go download the latest version of the Java applet plug-in from Oracle. This update also removes the Java Preferences application, which is no longer required to configure applet settings.”

The update fixes the sandboxing vulnerability that the hackers were exploiting.  Whats worth mentioning is that the update was released just hours after Apples own computers were hacked.  Apple announced that a small number of employee computers were affected in a attack using Java vulnerability.  However it went on to add that no evidence of any "data leaving Apple" existed hence no user data was compromised.  

Users are advised to download the Java 7 directly from the Oracles website here.  For Mac users the update for Java 6 is available in the Mac App store.  There are two separate packages for OS X Snow Leopard and OS X Mountain Lion. Please post your comments regarding this article

Vijay Prabhu

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