By Monica Chin
The attack, termed "Browser Reaper," was created by security researcher Sabri Haddouche. Haddouche has created a website containing buttons that will crash Chrome, Safari, and Firefox on command, as well as Safari iOS and Chrome OS. The Chrome version also crashes Microsoft Edge, according to some Twitter users.
Clicking one of Haddouche's buttons prompts a file with an "extremely long file name" to download onto the victim's computer once every millisecond. This floods the inter-process communication channel, the processes an operating system uses to respond to user requests. This all causes your browser to become unresponsive, or even crash.
MORE: Best Antivirus Software and Apps
The attack could even consume so much memory that the OS itself crashes, according to Bleeping Computer, who first reported the story.
There is not yet a known solution to this noted vulnerability. Haddouche has submitted a bug report calling for Firefox to limit downloading multiple files from one site without permission.
While we wait for that to be fixed, there's not a ton you can do to protect against this attack. Just make sure you don't click on sketchy links that you aren't familiar with, as you never know what scripts might be embedded there.
- Best Password Managers
- Mobile Security Guide: Everything You Need to Know
- Antivirus Software Buying Guide
Get instant access to breaking news, the hottest reviews, great deals and helpful tips.
Thank you for signing up to Tom's Guide. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.