If you have servers using SSL, read this

I was going to post about SSL certification and setup today, but the security world got ahead of me.

Recent versions of openssl – the library used by most applications to implement SSL – released over the past couple of years have a critical bug in them. This bug lets any attacker read any information from the process that’s running SSL, reliably, silently and without leaving any trace on the compromised server that it’s happened.

What’s so dangerous about that? As well as things like usernames, passwords, private email and so on, this lets the attacker take the private key for your SSL certificate. Once they have that private key, they can run a server that pretends to be you, even over SSL, opening up all sorts of shenanigans.

There are more details at – but the short form is that you should check the version of openssl on all your servers – if it’s running openssl version 1.0.1 through 1.0.1f, it’s vulnerable.

You should obviously upgrade to openssl 1.0.1g on vulnerable machines, but given the scope of the potential attack you might want to consider the information on them already compromised. If so, that’d mean replacing the SSL certificates and changing any passwords the affected services have access to (both user passwords and any service passwords, such as database credentials).


1 comment

  1. Jonas Falck says

    We just recently updated our email security appliance (virtual or hardware) with a fix for this vulnerability:


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