Risk
4/24/2013
11:05 AM
50%
50%

Java Flaw Targeted By Crimeware Toolkit: Patch Now

Don't wait on this update, Java 7 users. Exploit uses bug, patched by Oracle last week, to execute arbitrary code.

Java 7 users: Have you updated to the latest version of the software, released last week by Oracle?

Anyone who isn't using Java 7 update 21, released last Tuesday, is at risk of being exploited via active attacks that target one or more Java browser plug-in vulnerabilities patched by Oracle.

Related attacks began Sunday, according to a brief research note published by security firm F-Secure. That's just five days after Oracle released the update, which included fixes for 42 vulnerabilities -- 39 of which could be remotely exploited without authentication -- as well as a new malicious Java application warning system.

One of the patched vulnerabilities (CVE-2013-2423) could be used to disable the Java security manager and run arbitrary code outside of the Java sandbox, according to Jeroen Frijters, the lead developer of the IKVM.NET project -- which maintains a Java virtual machine implemented in .NET. Frijters advertises himself as an "accidental security researcher."

[ Learn why security experts say Oracle is making good decisions. Read Oracle Delays Java 8 To Improve Java 7 Security. ]

By Saturday, an exploit for the flaw discovered by Frijters had been added to the open source vulnerability testing toolkit Metasploit, in the form of a new module.

"The vulnerability affects Java version 7u17 and earlier," said security researcher Eric Romang in a blog post. "This exploit doesn't bypass click-to-play, so the user must accept the java warning in order to run the malicious applet."

To date, the vulnerability appears to have been targeted via one or more crimeware exploits kits, but it's not yet clear which ones. F-Secure anti-malware analyst Timo Hirvonen Tuesday tweeted: "New Java exploit for CVE-2013-2423 has been introduced to RedKit."

But shortly thereafter, he noted that "it seems our automation identified the kit incorrectly" and tweeted: "We still need to work on identifying the exploit kit that introduced CVE-2013-2423. Looks like it might be CrimeBoss instead of RedKit."

CrimeBoss is an exploit toolkit that, after being loaded onto a website that's been compromised by an attacker, attempts to infect website visitors via malicious iFrames. While the toolkit is designed to exploit Java vulnerabilities "by faking the Java(TM) Platform SE Auto Updater," according to the Malware Must Die! blog, "even without Java you can get infected too."

RedKit, meanwhile, is a Russian-language toolkit that competes with the BlackHole and Phoenix crimeware packs, and which has often been loaded up with the latest Java exploits by its developers. RedKit is loaded onto compromised websites and targets browsers via drive-by attacks. The toolkit was used in February, for example, to infect visitors to the NBC.com website with malware such as Citadel.

Despite the release of Java 7 update 21 last week and fixes for dozens of bugs, Adam Gowdiak, CEO of Polish security research firm Security Explorations, said Monday that he'd already discovered a new, exploitable vulnerability in the update, which affects both the Java browser plug-in client as well as the all-new Server Java Runtime Environment (JRE).

According to the security firm's vendor status website page, two other flaws that the company reported to Oracle -- backed with proof-of-concept exploit code -- in the past two months are being "fixed in main codeline" or are still under investigation.

People are your most vulnerable endpoint. Make sure your security strategy addresses that fact. Also in the new, all-digital How Hackers Fool Your Employees issue of Dark Reading: Effective security doesn't mean stopping all attackers. (Free registration required.)

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
White Papers
More White Papers
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Dark Reading Tech Digest, Dec. 19, 2014
Software-defined networking can be a net plus for security. The key: Work with the network team to implement gradually, test as you go, and take the opportunity to overhaul your security strategy.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2014-8917
Published: 2015-01-28
Multiple cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerabilities in (1) dojox/form/resources/uploader.swf (aka upload.swf), (2) dojox/form/resources/fileuploader.swf (aka fileupload.swf), (3) dojox/av/resources/audio.swf, and (4) dojox/av/resources/video.swf in the IBM Dojo Toolkit, as used in IBM Social Media A...

CVE-2014-8920
Published: 2015-01-28
Buffer overflow in the Data Transfer Program in IBM i Access 5770-XE1 5R4, 6.1, and 7.1 on Windows allows local users to gain privileges via unspecified vectors.

CVE-2015-0235
Published: 2015-01-28
Heap-based buffer overflow in the __nss_hostname_digits_dots function in glibc 2.2, and other 2.x versions before 2.18, allows context-dependent attackers to execute arbitrary code via vectors related to the (1) gethostbyname or (2) gethostbyname2 function, aka "GHOST."

CVE-2015-0312
Published: 2015-01-28
Double free vulnerability in Adobe Flash Player before 13.0.0.264 and 14.x through 16.x before 16.0.0.296 on Windows and OS X and before 11.2.202.440 on Linux allows attackers to execute arbitrary code via unspecified vectors.

CVE-2015-0581
Published: 2015-01-28
The XML parser in Cisco Prime Service Catalog before 10.1 allows remote authenticated users to read arbitrary files or cause a denial of service (CPU and memory consumption) via an external entity declaration in conjunction with an entity reference, as demonstrated by reading private keys, related t...

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
If youíre a security professional, youíve probably been asked many questions about the December attack on Sony. On Jan. 21 at 1pm eastern, you can join a special, one-hour Dark Reading Radio discussion devoted to the Sony hack and the issues that may arise from it.