Tech Expert: Heartbleed a Reminder to Regularly Change Passwords

Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 06:27 PM

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The Heartbleed bug that allowed hackers to breach personal data of millions of online users and may continue to be a problem for major websites, but users who follow basic Internet security principals should be safe, says Sam Volkering.

Users should change their passwords and make them complicated, the editor of the TechInsider told Ed Berliner and J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV. In addition to changing those passwords now, users should change them frequently, he said.

"The best way to do that might just to be simply have a phrase that you remember to yourself," he said. "It might be as simple as, 'I feed the cat.' Within that password, mix it up with capital letters or some numbers, or some symbols. That in itself becomes complex enough to really prevent any kind of major hack on your passwords."

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Reports of how widespread the effects of the bug were may have been overblown. Big sites like Google, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram were effected, but most financial institutions were not, Volkering said.

"One of the most important things for the average person that's watching tonight really needs to understand that you shouldn't panic. That’s the key theme," he said. "It might not necessarily have affected the site that you're changing it on, but I think it's always better to be safe than sorry, specifically when it comes to managing those kinds of security checks."

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