UPDATE: A few hours after this article was published, an agreement to allow unpaid Federal workers to go back to work and be paid was announced. Obviously, that is great news even though it is only a temporary agreement. However, do not expect immediate resolution of the problems detailed in this article. The employees face a big backlog of work to be done that probably will require days, or even weeks, to resolve at a time when the same employees are also trying to handle normal, day-to-day business requirements. Resolution will require some time.
We all know the familiar story of the 800,000+ U.S. workers, and the millions of contractors, who are not receiving paychecks. There is one aspect of this story that is not as well known, however. The problem is that no one is renewing SSL and TLS security certificates on web sites. Even worse, most of the web sites are also unmonitored. That means if a hacker or a spy does manage to break into one of these government web sites, nobody will notice and there is no one available to react to block the continued access.