Heartbleed Bug Could Disconnect Internet of Things

Major technology vendors have been pressing hard on the Internet of Things (IoT), but the Heartbleed bug could bring a disconnect before the movement ever gains momentum.

About two weeks ago, Cisco, IBM, GE and AT&T launched the Industrial Internet Consortium, an open membership group that aims to break down technology silo barriers and drive better big data access with improved integration between digital and physical worlds. IoT believers were rejoicing.

Heartbleed is a wakeup call. Impacting most of the Internet, Heartbleed could give hackers access to user passwords and even trick people into using fake versions of popular Web sites. Security engineers at Codenomicon who found the bug, are reporting that the vulnerability is in the OpenSSL cryptographic software library. The weakness, they said, steals information typically protected by the SSL/TLS encryption used to secure the Internet.

Connecting Everything

We caught up with Ed Moyle, director of Emerging Business and Technology, ISACA, an international professional organization focused on IT governance, to get his thoughts on the IoT-Heartbleed connection. First, he told us itEUs a monumental bug in that up to 66 percent of the Internet is potentially impacted, according to Netcraft data.

EUOne significant area that has been covered less in the industry press is the impact this issue could have outside of the population of vulnerable Web servers,EU Moyle said. EUNow clearly, the impact to Web servers is a big deal. But consider for a moment what else might be impacted by this. Here's a hint: it's Internet of Things Day today.EU

Moyle explained that OpenSSL has a developer-friendly license, requiring only attribution for it to be linked against, copied and pasted or otherwise incorporated into a derivative software product. Of course, itEUs also free. According to Moyle, all this makes it compelling for developers to use OpenSSL for anything that requires...

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