Heartbleed forces HealthCare.gov password reset

If you signed up for insurance through HealthCare.gov, you need to change your password. Why? Because Heartbleed, that’s why.

In a message posted to the website, the U.S. government says that it decided to reset all passwords due to the Heartbleed bug, which put millions of websites at risk of cyberattack after it was revealed to the world earlier this month. The government says Healthcare.gov was not affected by Heartbleed, but that the team is forcing a password reset, just in case. From the warning:

Recently, you may have heard about a new internet security weakness, known as Heartbleed, which is impacting some websites. HealthCare.gov uses many layers of protections to secure your information. While there’s no indication that any personal information has ever been at risk, we have taken steps to address Heartbleed issues and reset consumers’ passwords out of an abundance of caution. This means the next time you visit the website, you’ll need to create a new password. We strongly recommend you create a unique password – not one that you’ve already used on other websites.

The message goes on to explain how to reset your password. It also reiterates that there is “no indication that Heartbleed has been used against HealthCare.gov or that any personal information has ever been at risk.” Instead, the HealthCare.gov team rolled out the password reset “out of an abundance of caution, to ensure the protection of your information.”

For more information about how to protect yourself from Heartbleed, which may continue to wreak havoc online for years, see our complete guides here and here.

H/T Gawker | lllustration by Fernando Alfonso III

Andrew Couts

Andrew Couts

Andrew Couts is the former editor of Layer 8, a section dedicated to the intersection of the Internet and the state—and the gaps in between. Prior to the Daily Dot, Couts served as features editor and features writer for Digital Trends, associate editor of TheWeek.com, and associate editor at Maxim magazine. When he’s not working, Couts can be found hiking with his German shepherds or blasting around on motorcycles.