Keeping your devices safe from hackers

(CBS) -- Almost every computer, tablet, smartphone and even cloud server may have been exposed to hackers for years.

"It's a widespread concern because it affects pretty much anybody," says CNET's Dan Ackerman.

Ackerman says researchers found security flaws in computer processors made by Intel and other chip manufacturers. The bugs could allow hackers to grab personal information from millions of devices.

"These are ways to exploit how computer processors talk to computer operating systems," Ackerman says.

A team at Google called 'Project Zero' discovered the problem and in a blog post said "...An unauthorized party may read sensitive information in the system's memory such as passwords, encryption keys, or sensitive information open in applications."

Chip makers and tech companies have known about the problem in smartphones, computers and other devices for months.They were keeping it quiet until a fix was developed so hackers couldn't exploit the flaw.

But the news was revealed a few days early and now companies are racing to get software updates out.

"People shouldn't panic, there's no evidence any bad actors have discovered it ahead of time and are using it and of course the tech companies are working to get it patched for everybody," Ackerman says.

Tech giants like Google, Microsoft and others already have a fix in place or are putting one out soon. Experts say it's extremely important you run the latest software updates on your devices to make sure your information stays safe.