If you’ve been on the internet in the past few days you’ve probably heard of it. The Heartbleed Bug, an issue in the security software used over nearly 65% of the internet was discovered this week.
What is it and why do I care? What does this mean for you? Turbine’s got your answers.
What is it and why do I care?
OpenSSL cryptographic software is what it used to keep your information private. For example that little lock that appears when you’re typing in credit card information on most sites involves OpenSSL. The Heartbleed bug is an issue in the programming. Think of it as not finishing a sentence when you’re writing a 100 page paper, an easy mistake you probably wouldn’t notice, right? Earlier this week the bug was reported, and before it was announced a newer, fixed version of OpenSSL was released.
The bug poses a huge privacy risk for anyone who has used the internet recently. The bug has been present for at least 2 years, and is impossible to trace. The bug gives a hacker the opportunity to steal encryption keys, user credentials, protected content like credit card information and emails, and collateral. No one is sure if the bug has been known for long or who took advantage of it.
What does this mean for me?
The Heartbleed bug means that there is a chance someone has been spying on you and stealing your information for the past 2 years. You should change your passwords just to be safe, but make sure the pages you update on have already upgraded to the new fixed OpenSSL or changing your password won’t help. You can find out if a page has been updated by checking here.
It’s likely that most webpages will be fixed within the next few days. Small business and forgotten webpages and blogs are a much bigger issue. These types of pages may not be fixed for a long time, so check them and make sure you’re protected before you access these webpages.
The Heartbleed Bug is a big deal. However, it’s also a possibility that the bug went unnoticed until now. The best guidance is to change your passwords as necessary and check that webpages have been updated before you access them.
To learn more about the Heartbleed Bug check out the webpage at www.heartbleed.com