Vulnerabilities / Threats
6/4/2013
05:18 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

No Java Patch For You: 93 Percent Of Users Run Older Versions Of The App

Many end users stuck with older Java to run certain apps, Websense finds

Despite growing awareness of the dangers of Java bugs and exploits, plus Oracle's update of the app in mid-April, some 93 percent of users still aren't running the latest version of the beleaguered app.

That's only a 2 percent improvement from last March, according to Websense, which released the new data today. And it's not all about consumers not applying patches: Most of the data comes from business users, according to Websense.

The lack-of-patching problem is in part a function of Java itself. "My assumption is that many are in the situation where they can't patch because they are depending on applications for productivity that won't work with altered versions," says Bob Hansmann, senior marketing manager for Websense Security Labs. Some developers have written their apps on older versions of the platform, and its open community approach has made for difficulties in compatibility of newer versions.

Some developers have written apps to a specific iteration and version of Java, and if they were to upgrade to the newer version, they would lose features or functionality, he says. That leaves users stuck with older and more vulnerable Java versions.

The latest data is a follow-up to a report back in March where Websense found that nearly 95 percent of endpoints actively running Java are vulnerable to at least a single Java exploit: Seventy-five percent of end users were running a version of Java in their browsers that's at least six months out of date; two-thirds, a year out of date; and 50 percent, more than two years out of date. And nearly one-fourth of users were employing a Java version that was more than four years old.

The newest version of Java, Version 7 Update 21, is just not getting much uptake yet, according to the data released today by Websense. The small amount of adoption has been very gradual: Two days after the release of the patch in April, less than 2 percent of users had adopted Version 7 Update 21, and after one week, less than 3 percent. Two weeks after the release, 4 percent had updated, and one month after it came out, just 7 percent had updated.

The stakes are high: Thirty-nine of the 42 security fixes in CVE-2013-2423 may be remotely exploitable without authentication, Websense points out, and a Metasploit module was released just a few days after the patch was issued by Oracle. "Not only that, but we are also monitoring the possible impact of a recent vulnerability disclosure affecting the Java SE Version 7 Update 21 itself," Websense said in a blog post today. The security firm recommends updating to the latest version, and to do the same with the upcoming patches from Oracle on June 18.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Add Your Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message.

Kelly Jackson Higgins is Executive Editor at DarkReading.com. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2014-9710
Published: 2015-05-27
The Btrfs implementation in the Linux kernel before 3.19 does not ensure that the visible xattr state is consistent with a requested replacement, which allows local users to bypass intended ACL settings and gain privileges via standard filesystem operations (1) during an xattr-replacement time windo...

CVE-2014-9715
Published: 2015-05-27
include/net/netfilter/nf_conntrack_extend.h in the netfilter subsystem in the Linux kernel before 3.14.5 uses an insufficiently large data type for certain extension data, which allows local users to cause a denial of service (NULL pointer dereference and OOPS) via outbound network traffic that trig...

CVE-2015-2666
Published: 2015-05-27
Stack-based buffer overflow in the get_matching_model_microcode function in arch/x86/kernel/cpu/microcode/intel_early.c in the Linux kernel before 4.0 allows context-dependent attackers to gain privileges by constructing a crafted microcode header and leveraging root privileges for write access to t...

CVE-2015-2830
Published: 2015-05-27
arch/x86/kernel/entry_64.S in the Linux kernel before 3.19.2 does not prevent the TS_COMPAT flag from reaching a user-mode task, which might allow local users to bypass the seccomp or audit protection mechanism via a crafted application that uses the (1) fork or (2) close system call, as demonstrate...

CVE-2015-2922
Published: 2015-05-27
The ndisc_router_discovery function in net/ipv6/ndisc.c in the Neighbor Discovery (ND) protocol implementation in the IPv6 stack in the Linux kernel before 3.19.6 allows remote attackers to reconfigure a hop-limit setting via a small hop_limit value in a Router Advertisement (RA) message.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Join security and risk expert John Pironti and Dark Reading Editor-in-Chief Tim Wilson for a live online discussion of the sea-changing shift in security strategy and the many ways it is affecting IT and business.