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Experts warn of potential critical bugs in OpenSSL
Major operating system vendors, software publishers, email providers and technology companies that integrate OpenSSL into their products have been asked to prepare for a possible “critical” vulnerability in versions 3.0 and higher of almost all cryptographic library.
OpenSSL is a software library for applications that protects communication over computer networks from eavesdropping or identifying the party at the other end. It is mainly used by internet servers, most of which are HTTPS websites.
The patch to fix the yet to disclosed flaw in current versions of the technology will be released in a new version of OpenSSL (version 3.0.7) scheduled for Tuesday, November 1. Although the updated version of the technology will be released simultaneously with the release of the OpenSSL project, it will potentially leave millions of others with an imminent deadline to find and fix the vulnerability before attackers start exploiting it.
Researchers fear that the new vulnerability may be yet another Heartbleed bug. CVE-2014-0160, a Heartbleed vulnerability that was discovered in 2014, allows attackers to intercept Internet communications and steal data from services and users, and allow attackers to impersonate services and perform malicious activities that leave little trace to track their actions.
Anything that communicates securely with the Internet could potentially have OpenSSL built in. Besides software, hardware may also be affected.
The advance information provided by the OpenSSL project gives organizations time to prepare for it.
According to Mike Parkin, senior technical engineer at Vulcan Cyber, in the absence of exploit activity and related indicators of compromise, organizations should follow their normal change management process when a known update is on the way.
Since some organizations have already dealt with Heartbleed, they are expected to know where their OpenSSL installations are, as this is required by their vendor products for the update.
For John Barnbenek, chief threat hunter at Netenrich, one likely problem organizations need to prepare for is how to deal with end-of-life products for which updates are not available.
The sources for this piece are an article in DarkReading.