Over the past month, hundreds of thousands of developers and IT managers around the planet have been working over weekends and holidays to fix a vulnerability in Log4j, an otherwise boring piece of software found in millions of computer servers, from those owned by giants like Apple and Twitter to ‘smart’ televisions, security cameras and other appliances in people’s homes. Before Nasa’s denial, it was feared that its Mars helicopter might have carried the vulnerability to another planet. Meanwhile, bad actors are devising increasingly clever ways to exploit those vulnerabilities, installing backdoors, crypto-mining tools and other bits of malware before the systems are patched. Despite the patches being available within days, it might take a couple of years before the threat passes. Tech executives are scheduled to meet the US deputy national security advisor on the matter this month.