Cybersecurity Alert: “Spectre” and “Meltdown” Security Flaws

Cybersecurity Alert: “Spectre” and “Meltdown” Security Flaws


As you may know from recent media coverage, cybersecurity experts announced two major security flaws this week, known as Spectre and Meltdown. The flaws could potentially allow an attacker to read sensitive data stored in a device's memory like passwords, or read documents open on a computer.

Normally, applications are not able to do that because they are isolated from each other and the operating system. This hardware bug breaks that isolation. Experts are still researching how hackers could take advantage of these vulnerabilities, but you are likely vulnerable if you use a laptop, desktop PC, tablet, server, smartphone, or a cloud service.

What is First International Bank & Trust doing about this?

As a best practice, the Bank updates our software and hardware with the latest patches on a timely basis. First International Bank and Trust will apply the latest patches to mitigate against Spectre and Meltdown. In general, First International Bank and Trust utilizes multiple layers of cybersecurity defenses to protect our network and customer information from cybersecurity threats. Security and the safety of your information is and always will be a top priority for First International Bank and Trust.

What can you do about these threats?

Watch for software, operating system and web browser updates from companies like Apple, Microsoft, Google Chrome, Firefox, etc. Install updates immediately, or turn on automatic updates where available. Also keep an eye on trusted media outlets for additional news.

Beyond that, continue to follow security best practices, and always “Think Before You Click.”

  • Do not open emails from people you don’t know.  If you weren’t expecting the email, or if it includes an urgent message to act, it is most likely a bad email and you should not open the email.  Remember to not click on links or download attachments. 
  • Avoid websites you aren’t familiar with.  Avoid sketchy parts of the internet.  Do not click on advertisements, popup windows, or download files or plug-ins unless you know that they are safe. 
  • Remember to not share your password or personal information.  Legitimate vendors will not ask for your personal information or passwords unsolicited.  First International Bank and Trust will never ask for your personal information or password unsolicited. 
  • Be alert for social engineering scams related to Spectre and Meltdown announcements. These follow most major cyber incidents, and Meltdown and Spectre will be no different.  Only apply patches from trusted companies like Microsoft, Apple, and Google etc.  

For more general tips, please visit our Education Center.

Additional Resources to learn more about Spectre and Meltdown:


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