An exploit known as “Heartbleed” Bug has shown up in the OpenSSL cryptographic library, and it could essentially allow attackers to gain access to highly sensitive information, including credit card numbers, usernames, passwords, and other sensitive data.
“This weakness allows stealing the information protected, under normal conditions, by the SSL/TLS encryption used to secure the Internet. SSL/TLS provides communication security and privacy over the Internet for applications such as web, email, instant messaging (IM) and some virtual private networks (VPNs),” reads a description of the bug on the Heartbleed.com website.
“The Heartbleed bug allows anyone on the Internet to read the memory of the systems protected by the vulnerable versions of the OpenSSL software.”
It can compromise secret keys used to encrypt web traffic, allowing attackers to eavesdrop communications or impersonate other users.
“As long as the vulnerable version of OpenSSL is in use it can be abused,” the website states. Fixed OpenSSL was released but it has to be deployed en masse, the website added.
The U.S. National Security Agency knew for at least two years about a flaw in the way that many websites send sensitive information and regularly used it to gather critical intelligence, two people familiar with the matter said.
Thanks to the theepochtime and bugburg