via LA Times
A major cyber-attack in Europe that apparently was launched from Iran has revealed significant vulnerabilities in the Internet security systems used to authenticate websites for banking, email and e-commerce around the world.
The attack this summer wreaked havoc in the Netherlands, where the justice minister on Sunday warned the public that the only secure way to communicate with the Dutch government was with pen, paper and fax machine.
The digital assault compromised a Dutch company called DigiNotar, which issues digital certificates, computer code that assures browsers that a website is what it appears to be. The certificates also encrypt communications between the user and the site so they can’t be intercepted.