Penn Computing

Penn Computing

Computing Menu Computing A-Z
Computing Home Information Systems & Computing Penn


Thursday, January 29, 2015

  New Resources
Travel Tips for Data Security
Free Security/Privacy Training Resources
Two-step verification
Combating Malware
Phishing Archive
Cloud Computing and Data Outsourcing
Best Practices for Applications with Confidential University Data
  Security "Greatest Hits"
Managing Passwords
E-mail Harassment & Forgery
Hoaxes, frauds & scams
Wireless Networking
Encryption & digital signatures
  Best Practices
Secure desktop computing
Secure servers
Secure data deletion
Securing printers
Tips for safe computing
Computing policies
  More in-depth information for
Local support providers
System administrators
  Security initiatives
Critical host compliance
Authentication & authorization
Penn Security & Privacy Assessment (SPIA)
Security Liaisons (Restricted Access)
Secure Share
Secure Space
Vulnerability Scanner
  Related links
Electronic privacy
Worms, trojans, backdoors

One Step Ahead: Almanac Security Tips - 2015

In each issue, Penn's Journal of Record, The Almanac publishes helpful tips and hints for dealing with information security and privacy matters. This page is a collection of all those published thus far.
New! You can now receive new One-Step-Ahead Security and Privacy Tips automatically!
You can subscribe via Email or RSS.

Table of Contents (view all)

Most recently published...

Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
Security and Privacy Tips for World Travelers
Filing Taxes Online This Year? Take Steps to Protect Your Information!
If your computer runs Windows XP, you must update it now!
Why Should You Report Security Incidents? And How Do You Report One?
Photo and Video Privacy Issues
The Password is Dead, Long Live the Password!
Data Privacy Month: NSA Surveillance Panel at the National Constitution Center
Protecting Your Finances During This Year’s Holiday Shopping Season
Beware of Phishing E-mails in the Wake of Typhoon Haiyan
No E-mail from Penn Will Ask For Your Username/Password or SSN
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act: Does It Apply to Your Website?
October: National Cyber Security Awareness Month; Free Secure Disposal of Paper and Electronics
What Basic Rules Protect Student Information at Penn? (September 2013)
Protecting Privacy and Security on Penn + Box

Whats popular?

   privacy    security    identity theft    software    www    passwords    email    home computing    phishing    virus    documents    hackers        SSNs    mobile devices    keyloggers    wireless    social networking

Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - Almanac Vol. 60, No. 32

Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability

A vulnerability in OpenSSL, a cryptographic protocol used by many websites to secure web traffic, was disclosed on Monday evening, April 7, 2014.

The so-called "Heartbleed" vulnerability has affected a large number of systems worldwide and can be exploited to expose the keys used to encrypt traffic from the vulnerable sites, as well as other data meant to be protected, including usernames and passwords.

Penn's IT staff began working immediately to identify and remediate vulnerable machines, with an emphasis on finding and repairing Penn's most critical systems first. Fortunately, the central servers that maintain Penn's CoSign WebLogin service, the primary web-based authentication method used by Penn websites, were not vulnerable to this issue. Nor were other parts of Penn's central identity and access management infrastructure (e.g. wireless authentication portals).

In addition to scanning continuously for vulnerable Penn machines, ISC Information Security is monitoring network traffic for any active attacks on Penn systems. They continue to encourage all PennKey holders to enroll in Two-Step Verification ( which would mitigate this risk, as well as other attacks (such as phishing).

It is suggested that users also monitor other personal, sensitive accounts across the Internet and contact the owners of those websites with any questions.(1) Note that many popular services, like Facebook, Google and Twitter, enable multi-factor authentication as well.

Lastly, please be on the lookout for fraudulent email claiming to be from companies with which you do business (including Penn), as criminals may use this event to create phishing email messages designed to trick people into divulging their passwords. No legitimate party from Penn will ever ask you to share your password , and if a campaign to change PennKey passwords was ever initiated, it would be well-communicated and easily verifiable with your Local Support Provider.

If you have any questions about Heartbleed please contact:

(1) For more information about applications and services affected by the Heartbleed OpenSSL vulnerability please see


Information Systems and Computing
University of Pennsylvania
Comments & Questions

Penn Computing University of Pennsylvania
Information Systems and Computing, University of Pennsylvania