The Meltdown and Spectre vulnerability update fiasco won’t come to an end too soon, and that’s pretty clear especially following Intel itself acknowledging that its own fixes are a complete blunder.
Fortunately for users worldwide, however, the reaction of the industry was much better than Intel’s, and those who could patch the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities already did it shortly after the public disclosure.
Others, like Opera, continue to focus on refining the experience after delivering patches in an attempt to make sure that no successful attack takes place against users.
Opera browser 50.0.2762.67, which is part of the stable channel, introduces new Spectre fixes supposed to make it harder for an attacker to compromise a computer once a malicious website is being loaded in this app.
Opera 51 to bring even more fixes
The company explains today that what the new version does is set a high precision time for performance.now(), which is pretty much the same tweak that other browser developers, like Microsoft and Mozilla, turned to in order to prevent attacks.
“After the change, performance.now() has a precision of 100μs and additionally it has received a small amount of randomness in it. That will make the attacks both much harder and less efficient,” Opera says.
Note that the company said that attacks will be “much harder and less efficient,” but not impossible, so you’re still recommended to stay away from sites that you don’t trust and sent by unknown sources.
Opera also says that further mitigations will be delivered with Opera 51, adding that fully fixing the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities is a thing that won’t happen overnight.
“Fully addressing these flaws is something that will take a long time, potentially requiring redesigned hardware, but as a browser vendor we have a duty to protect our users despite the circumstances so we are not waiting,” it says.