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US government shutdown causing web security issues

If you thought the shutdown of drug marketplace the Silk Road was an indication that the US authorities remain on the ball despite their government technically shutting down due to a disagreement over the budget, think again. Thanks to employees not being able to do their job properly, SSL certifications on government websites have begun expiring.

In fact, visiting president Barack Obama’s own website just a few hours ago would have greeted you with a warning that the site’s security certificate had expired. It seems to be working ok now, so perhaps someone has cottoned on and fixed the issue, but heading there before that would have shown Chrome users this:

ssl

Current managing director at GlobalSign, Paul Tourret, took the opportunity to get a few digs in at the government’s expense, suggesting:”Until US Congress resumes services it is inevitable that we will see expired certificates and this example just goes to show how vulnerable organisations who are susceptible to shutdown can be. We predict that over 600 SSL Certificates currently securing a .gov domain are due to expire  in October will be potentially affected. To minimise the impact, current automated SSL Certificate lifecycle management tools can help in terms of best practice when managing SSL reliance during unforeseen outages”.

KitGuru Says: Have any of of our American readers stumbled across government sites with outdated certificates?

[Thanks Netcraft]

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