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    4 things dental practitioners need to know about the Heartbleed bug

    Learn what you need to know about this new bug to make sure your dental practice is protected.

    As you may have already heard, there’s a new bug called Heartbleed that lets attackers read the memory of a server of client, allowing them to retrieve private keys and other sensitive information.  Read on to find out 4 things you need to know about the Heartbleed bug to make sure your dental practice is protected.

    1.     It’s not a virus. Computer viruses are small programs that spread from one computer to another, often leaving a path of destruction in their digital wake.  On the other hand, a bug like Heartbleed is a software defect that causes a program to malfunction or creates a security breach that ne’er-do-wells can exploit to gain access to your sensitive information, files, data and more.

    2.     Only platforms running OpenSSL are affected by the Heartbleed bug. Check with your system administrator to see if any of the programs you run utilize OpenSSL, or you can browse this list of affected programs that Mashable recently assembled.

    3.     Even if your system administrator says your practice management software is safe, it’s probably a good idea to change all of your passwords across the web.  The same computers you use to run your software may be used to access a site using OpenSSL, so as a result your system may be compromised in other ways.

    4.     Now is the time to create a schedule to routinely update all of your passwords, as well as inform your employees that they are required to do the same. Instituting a practice-wide password policy will help ensure everyone is on the same page when it comes to the security of the system they depend upon.