Off late, there has been a lot of buzz generating around a possible bug that could allow hackers to control hundreds of millions of devices on a global scale. In response to this news, governments across the world have started implementing the required security measures to protect their crucial information infrastructure as well as preventing anyone from exercising control over their systems.
Bash Bug Virus
The programming flaw, aptly being referred to as “Shellshock” was first discovered in a software called Bash. This is the same software that is being used by Apple’s Mac OS and Linux’s systems. Now the reason behind so much anxiety is that governments, the military and banking institutions make use of these systems. So if the flaw is exploited by hackers, then it could lead to a massive breakdown on a global scale, the likes of which have never been seen or heard of yet.
What’s the Big Deal With Bash Bug?
Apparently the bug is a flaw in the programming in a system software known as Bash. This system software has been in existence since 1989 and forms a crucial component of all UNIX based systems. Now the thing with UNIX based systems is that they are used or implemented in a wide range of devices including Android smartphones, servers, routers, medical devices, Mac computers and even on systems that are used for generating bitcoins.
Christopher Budd, global threat communications manager at Trend Micro (a security firm) expressed his opinion on the bash bug wherein he stated, “Bash bug is a command shell which is a thing that you use to tell your computer what you want it to do.” So basically, a flaw in this programming would give complete control to anyone who hacks into the systems by leveraging this loophole. A hacker would be able to command all the systems that he is able to get access to and this would mean that even systems used by governments or even banking institutions would be just a click away from being misused.
Is Bash Bug Really Worse Than Heartbleed?
Let’s compare the outcomes of both bugs to get an understanding of the possible implications. Heartbleed exposed sensitive data and passwords to hackers by means of which they could get access to the profiles and sites. But Bash Bug puts the hacker in control of the device in such a way that he is free to run any command and install any program. It is clear that the implications of bash bug are significantly more dangerous than that of heartbleed.
What Can Be Done About Bash Bug?
General users do not have much control over the situation at the moment and the best that they can do is to wait till a possible fix is released for the same. When these fixes are released, it is important to apply the patches to routers and other components that have a direct relationship with bash. But android phone users need to be prepared for a delay in the release of the fixes for their devices as android based phone manufacturers are usually slow in pushing out Google’s updates. As a safety precaution, make sure that the security measures on your devices are maintained as per the latest updates so that your device becomes less susceptible to the risks.
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