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11 Bumps

DHS/CERT - disable Java runtime in your computers NOW

There are a lot of articles out there about this right now, and it seems they just get more and more confusing.  Here's the basic - there are 2 programming "things".  One is called Java Runtime.  It's software owned by Oracle.  One is JavaScript - it's what makes it possible for you to use full editor in CM, play games on pogo, use facebook apps, etc.  They are completely different things.

Right now, Homeland Security's computer division has found a serious vulnerability in Java Runtime which cannot be fixed in the foreseeable future, and leaves your computer open to all kinds of viral nastiness.  Again, this has nothing to do with JavaScript.

There are a lot of articles out about this right now, some more panicky than the next, so while this isn't a "mainstream" techy article, I'm linking this one because it has the most sensible, straightforward directions for only disabling Java Runtime without making you run around like a headless chicken and disable everything that starts with a J on your computer (and it's possible you may not even have Java Runtime installed to begin with):

Why You Should Probably Disable Java on Your Browser Right Now

And the specific instructions by OS:

The procedure is slightly different for each browser, but it's actually pretty simple for all of them except Internet Explorer. (One important note: Java should not be confused with Javascript. Disabling Javascript will result in a bunch of websites not working properly, and it won't do anything to address this threat.) Here are the basics for disabling Java:

  • In Firefox, select "Tools" from the main menu, then "Add-ons," then click the "Disable" button next to any Java plug-ins.
  • In Safari, click "Safari" in the main menu bar, then "Preferences," then select the "Security" tab and uncheck the button next to "Enable Java."
  • In Google Chrome, type "Chrome://Plugins" in your browser's address bar, then click the "Disable" button below any Java plug-ins.

If you're an Internet Explorer user, the process is a bit more complex. The blog Krebs on Security summarizes a procedure that "may or may not work." Alternatively, you could uninstall Java from your system, provided you don't need it for some particular application or website that's important to you.

(and my own note - if you still use Internet Explorer, just stop, it's the AOL of web browsers)

Answer Question

Asked by NotPanicking at 1:49 PM on Jan. 12, 2013 in Politics & Current Events

Level 51 (421,172 Credits)
Answers (42)
  • So you have to disable both Java plug ins? I don't know which one you have to use with minecraft, but DS will be most unsatisfied that I have disabled. LOL.

    Thanks for the heads up. I did disable them.

    Answer by QuinnMae at 1:53 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • okay whoa whoa whoa, computer illiterate here. im using chrome and typed in the suggested thing, but there were no java plug ins. how do i know if im using javascript or java runtime?

    Answer by tnm786 at 1:56 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • I disabled both on mine too QM. One actually had a warning on it and was already disabled. Thanks for the heads up NP.

    Answer by kmath at 1:57 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • how do i know if im using javascript or java runtime?

    You might not have runtime at all. If you are on windows and you have a Java Icon in your notification area icons, that's one clue - it looks like a little coffee cup. The other way to tell is under your control panel listing of programs, it includes one for Java as a standalone program.

    For Minecraft - download the full Minecraft client and have them run it from the standalone program, not from in the browser.

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 1:59 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • okay well, i think im good. thank you for posting!~

    Answer by tnm786 at 2:03 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • Should I do this with my phone too or just computer?

    Answer by mommy_jules at 2:13 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • I have it disabled on Firefox. I never use IE do i still have to do it there also?

    Answer by DJDNY at 2:21 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • Got it- thank you!

    Answer by staciandababy at 2:22 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • On your phone browser, just like your computer browser

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 2:22 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

  • I never use IE do i still have to do it there also?

    Probably not, as long as you're sure nobody else does either.

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 2:24 PM on Jan. 12, 2013

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