Hello, this is reminding you that the web, is after all not totally as secure as we all think. I am not saying that the internet is not a safe place for you, your business or your friends and family to be. Far from that. It is, unfortunately, a place that requires constant watching and guarding. In less that 15 minutes, a reputation built over 20 years could come down crashing like a jet! We all remember the case of an Ad company executive who misspoke and the social media turned on her for it!
This time around many people would be paying dearly, not for their miss-doings but because of a threat to the security of everyone on the web! This would cost a lot of people great opportunities and might also affect several businesses!
So what’s this all about?
IT’S THE HEARTBLEED BUG!!!
The heartbleed bug is a bug in the popular OpenSSL technology that encrypts passwords for at least 1/3 of the internet’s population. The 1/3 of which I, you, your manager and your mom might be among!
Now the big deal is that what the heartbleed bug does is it turns your already encrypted data (the version of your data which should be unreadable to humans) into readable and easily accessible data. While there have been a lot of awareness about this bug and what to do to stay safe, thanks to tech and news companies, I feel that business owners need more enlightening on what it’s all about and how to properly stay safe.
It’s NOT the Time to Panic!
Okay, so we know that there’s a huge monster out there! For all we care, it could be dangerous to some of us than a vampire, now what the heck! Where should we run to?!! Should I delete my email? Should I stop using Facebook, or should I just totally stop using the web on its own?
My answer is DON’T PANIC!
Panicking is not the best thing to do right now. The best thing to do right now is to get yourself together, and find a way to stay protected.
Get all your accounts, one by one. Create a stronger, different password for each of them. And no, don’t change the passwords yet, since the issue is not with your password on itself, it’s with websites you submit your passwords to. Changing your passwords now is like pouring new soap into dirty water.
So, wait till these websites have informed you that they have fixed their problems then change the password for each website as they update their systems.
Here are 4 Tools to Help You Feel Secure Online:
Dashlane is a trusted password manager that’s not only easy to install but is also fluid in its usage. When it comes to the security aspect, I don’t think anything beats a locally encrypted data. With Dashlane, your account details are encrypted on your computer, which means it’s not affected by online bugs such as the heartbleed bug.
To show you how safe this form of technology is, while installing the app, Dashlane warns you to NEVER forget your Master Password because your data won’t be recovered without it!
But do not totally rely on your password manager in such a situation because the website you registered with might be compromised and this type of situation would not be protected by Dashlane.
Dashlane’s CEO, Emmanuel Schalit’s recommendation is to immediately change passwords to accounts that are critical to you. He also advised to wait till 10 days (from 10th of April), then change all your passwords after most websites must have fixed their issues.
Thanks for the expert advice Emmanuel!
How to Get Dashlane:
Go to Dashlane website and navigate to Download Now. Your app should begin downloading automatically.
LastPass and Dashlane have quite set a security standard that I think other password management tools have to beat to stay highly recognized! LastPass boast of high level data encryption that will guarantee that your accounts are completely safe from threats.
In the wake of the Heartbleed bug incident, LastPass, through social media channels and especially through the company blog (blog.lastpass.com) has been sharing expert information and advice on how to manage your online accounts and stay protected from the heartbleed bug. This include a powerful and highly useful site checker tool that has caused many websites to admit that they’ve been compromised.
Great job LastPass!
To get LastPass, go to LastPass Download Page
Another alternative to LastPass and DashLane is 1PassWord. 1PassWord helps you store all your different passwords and also generates passwords for your convenience. With a “key”, you have access to all your passwords and account details on 1Password.
1Password also has similar abilities as LastPass and Dashlane. Check out 1Password’s website for instructions on how to download and install the app on your device.
#4. Your Mobile Phone >> 2Factor Authentication
2 Factor Authentication is the best way to stay secure online at the moment, considering that one of the internet’s most reliable means of staying secure has been breached. If you have you phone number registered with most websites, majority of them can offer the option of 2FA.
I think they all should! HubSpot talked about integrating 2FA into their system recently and Twitter, Google, Namecheap and a host of the most-used websites on the internet already have this integrated into their system.
While not all websites have adapted the 2FA technology at this moment, with the current situation at hand I believe a lot more are going to employ this method sooner than later!
Why Should You Use a 2FA?
Imagine that the heartbleed bug might have affected your account with, say Twitter, and there’s no guarantee that changing your password will bring a solution to the issue, your password in the hands of an hacker is practically useless because without your mobile phone no one can still gain access to your account.
The bottom line is to make sure you’re secure at all times. Make sure you’re using a tool that will help you generate strong unique passwords and use extra layer of security aside the SSL technology.
Do you have methods to stay secure online? Please let us know in the comment section!
#featured image captured from heartbleed.com.