What is "Heartbleed" ?
"Heartbleed" is the name given to a vulnerability recently discovered that affects almost two-thirds of all websites.
Many websites used a form of secure communications that encrypts information before sending it over the Internet. This is commonly referred to as "SSL", which is the technology that encrypts internet communications. When you are doing certain types of internet activity, such as buying something with your credit card, checking your bank account information, reading email or anything else that requires you to enter personal information, these communications employ data encryption to help hide your confidential information.
There was a software utility used by a large number of websites which helped provide this data encryption. A flaw was recently discovered in this particular utility that could have been exploited in order to gain access to encryption keys or actual data communications. What should have been safe and encrypted communications might (conceivably) have been intercepted.
Was Miners Bank impacted by Heartbleed?
The services offered by Miners Bank, such as Internet Banking, Cash Manager, etc. did not use the software that contained the Heartbleed vulnerability.
Should you still take precautions?
Even though Miners Bank did not use the software containing the Heartbleed vulnerability, you should still assume that somewhere, somehow, your data communications were potentially exposed. The problem affected such a large number of websites across a wide variety of business and government websites, you cannot be certain that your information was not at risk.
What can you do to further protect yourself?
1) Change all of your internet passwords. This includes passwords for your email, internet banking log-on, shopping accounts, credit cards, etc. Don't wait for these companies to notify you; it takes only a few minutes to update your password, but it can save you a lot of grief down the road.
2) Get in the habit of changing these passwords on some regular schedule (assuming the system doesn't already force you to change your password on some regular basis.) Changing your passwords every 30-90 days should be sufficient.
3) Keep your browser and operating system software up-to-date and on the latest release from your software vendor.
4) Always monitor your bank accounts for unauthorized transactions. Miners Bank provides three very useful tools to help you monitor your accounts.
- Internet Banking - 24/7 access to your accounts and transaction history.
- e-Statements - get your statements even faster using our Internet delivery service.
- Miners ALERTS - define when you want to receive a text message or email letting you know about activity or balances on your accounts. For instance, get alerts when a balance falls below a threshold that you define, or get alerts when certain types of activity post to your account.