Computer users are being urged to change passwords because of an internet security problem. It is feared a bug known as “Heartbleed” has left sites, including those with the “secure padlock” icon, open to being hacked.
An encryption flaw called the Heartbleed bug has left a collection of popular websites exposed in one of the biggest internet threats the internet has ever seen. What makes Heartbleed so profound, is that it has managed to go undetected for two years. It is unclear whether any information has been stolen as a result but if you have logged into an affected site over the past two years, your account information could be compromised, allowing cybercriminals to snap up your credit card information or steal your passwords..
How does it work? (the technical part)
Heartbleed creates an opening in SSL/TLS, an encryption technology marked by the small, closed padlock and “https:” on Web browsers to show that traffic is secure. A flaw in the programming makes it possible to snoop on Internet traffic even if the padlock is closed. Interlopers can also grab the keys for deciphering encrypted data without the website owners knowing the theft occurred.
What to do?
Ultimately, you’ll need to change your passwords, but that won’t do any good until the sites you use adopt the fix. It’s also up to the internet services affected by the bug to let users know of the potential risks and encourage them to change their passwords.
Make sure to keep an eye on sensitive online accounts, especially banking and email, for suspicious activity.
Protect your computer with a good quality Anti-virus. (free is not always best).
You can check if a website is affected with Heartbleed using the Heartbleed Checker.
Check out the Heartbleed website For more information.
The online community has been working very hard, and a lot have already secured their sites. A second on the internet is like a day in reality so be sure to check regularly, your websites fix could happen in the next few seconds.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Lee is the newest member of the Bridge PC Repair Team. He is our Chief Technician and Support Manager, specialising in Computer Repairs and Networking Solutions for Businesses.
Contact Lee: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tele: 051 560767