By now you have probably heard about the Heartbleed Bug. You may be wondering exactly what it is and if you need to worry about it. Worrying about it instantly becomes a pain in the butt, but unfortunately it is necessary. Sigh…
What is the Heartbleed Bug?
In short the Heartbleed Bug is a serious vulnerability in the popular OpenSSL cryptographic software library. This means that websites out there that use SSL may be compromised. You have to worry about this if you use any type of online account at all… anywhere! You should also worry if you are a blogger, if you have web hosting accounts, if you use online bill payments, if you maintain your own domain, and if you use online banking. In other words, worry if you ever use a username and password to log into any type of online account. You can get the full technical details on the Heartbleed Info website.
What Should You Do?
This is where the pain in the a$$ part comes in. It is recommended that we change all of our online passwords. All of them… Yes, I know… what?!?! Trust me… I know. Chances are that we may even have some online accounts that we don’t even remember that we have! Start by making a list of everything that you can think of. Online shopping sites like Amazon.com, eBay.com, HSN, etc. Also add your social media accounts, bank accounts, and any other accounts that you can think of. Prepare to change them.
What Type of Password Should I Use?
I see this a lot when I work with clients and other bloggers. Some folks password are just WAY too easy! This is a no no. Your password should not be anything that someone who knows you can figure out in a few guesses. It should not be an easy word. Check out Protecting Your Accounts with Good Passwords for more information. The post is old, but all of the information still applies. Also check out Online Holiday Shopping Tips to Keep Your Valuables Safe which gives you more tips especially if you online shop. And it gives you info on how Master Lock Vault can help you protect your passwords and online accounts.
Anything Else That I Should Know?
There are a few other things that you can do. One of those is to close or delete accounts that you no longer use. Most sites have some way for you to do that in your account. If you don’t see the option check the help forum, FAQ, or contact their support.
Heartbleed Site – The Heartbleed Bug