KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A bug called Heartbleed is affecting a majority of the internet. This massive security breach has gone undetected for two years, until its discovery this week. The bug essentially allows anyone on the internet to read the memory of systems that are meant to be protected.
It's an online bug that can attack multiple times without a trace.
Chief Operating Officer at IT 4 the Planet, Kevin Greene says, “Heartbleed is a vulnerability that allows that information to be seen potentially by a hacker.”
It allows hackers to take snapshots of memory from a server, which then provides access to personal information.
“They're basically doing a phishing type thing and grabbing random data,” adds Greene.
That random data can include passwords, credit card numbers and other personal information. Greene suggests looking for unusual activity, keeping an eye on bank accounts and credit cards, especially in the next few weeks.
With half a million sites vulnerable, there's no sure way to tell which sites are affected and which aren't. Anyone with doubts, can use www.lastpass.com/heartbleed for help.
“You can put in the URL of the site you're suspicious about [and want to double check] and it'll come back and tell you whether or not it's affected,” says Greene.
Changing passwords to various sites is also recommended, but not prior to a website fix.