Software have been released by computers experts, in order to tackle a major security glitch in the internet addressing system.
Thanks to the flaw, discovered by accident, criminals would be allowed to redirect users to fake webpages, even though they typed the correct address in a browser.
The security patch is now being distributed by Internet giants like Microsoft.
Though he said the case was unprecedented, security expert Dan Kaminsky, who discovered the error in the Domain Name System (DNS) about six months ago, added that “people should be concerned but they should not be panicking”.
DNS is used to convert web addresses written in words, like www.babs22.wordpress.com, into the numerical sequences used by computers to route internet traffic around the world.
“Phishing” scams, when users are directed to fake webpages supposedly for genuine banks or businesses and tricked into disclosing credit card details or other personal data, would become simple to operate with the glitch.
In March, Mr Kaminsky held talks with computer giants including Microsoft, Sun and Cisco. And since then he has been part of a team engaged in secret research, developing the security patch which has now been released simultaneously for all computer platforms.
In order to give companies a chance to update their computers before hackers try to unpick the patch, technical details are being kept secret for another month.
Personal computers should pick up the patch through automated updates.