Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) and Juniper Networks, Inc. (NYSE:JNPR), two of the largest manufacturers of network equipment, said some of their products contain the "Heartbleed" bug, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.
That means hackers might be able to capture usernames, passwords and other sensitive information as they move across corporate and home Internet networks.
Heartbleed isn't a simple cyberthreat.
The complexity of the bug that infects the encryption software known as OpenSSL is well beyond the contemplation of non-geeks. Even mere solutions to the Heartbleed crisis are difficult to grasp. Individual users can do little to protect themselves besides change their current passwords to more difficult ones, International Business Times reported on Thursday.
And even then, as Jen Weedon, a threat intelligence analyst at the security company FireEye, pointed out, “the average user is dependent on the owner of [a given] website” to add a patch that protects itself against the bug and, if necessary, reissue a new digital certificate -- essentially an online ID card that proves a website's legitimacy, IBTimes.com reported.