The Debian Patch for OpenSSL

A Slashdot comment linked to this very interesting post by a Debian developer on the openssl-dev list:

“What I currently see as best option is to actually comment out those 2 lines of code. But I have no idea what effect this really has on the RNG. The only effect I see is that the pool might receive less entropy. But on the other hand, I’m not even sure how much entropy some unitialised data has.

What do you people think about removing those 2 lines of code?”

This change made all keys generated over the last 2 years on any machine running Debian (or a derivative) be extremely easily guessable. Not only should you regenerate all your keys as soon as possible if affected, but if somebody recorded sensitive traffic you did in the last two years then you are in deep deep trouble.

Why on earth are the Debian developers patching security-critical packages without having absolutely any clue about the implications? How many other vulnerabilities did they actually introduce in this way?


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