Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Analytics

5/30/2018
06:00 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
LinkedIn
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Dozens of Vulnerabilities Discovered in DoD's Enterprise Travel System

In less than one month, security researchers participating in the Pentagon's Hack the Defense Travel System program found 65 vulnerabilities.

White-hat hackers participating in a US Department of Defense bug bounty initiative recently rooted out 65 unique security vulnerabilities in the Defense Travel System (DTS), an enterprise application used by millions of DoD workers worldwide.

In less than one month, more than two dozen of the uncovered flaws — 28 — were flagged as high or critical in severity, according to HackerOne, the entity that managed the initiative for the DoD.

The DoD's Hack the DTS (Defense Travel System) contest is part of a broader DoD crowd-sourced bug hunting initiative called Hack the Pentagon. It's the fifth time the DoD has used such a program to try and proactively find vulnerabilities in important systems that its own security organizations might have missed. So far, since its launch in April 2016, the Hack the Pentagon program has helped the DoD find and fix some 3,600 vulnerabilities in total.

The Hack the DTS program ran from April 1 to April 29. A total of 19 security researchers participated in it and employed a bag of tricks including social engineering to try and find vulnerabilities in DTS that could be exploited. To be eligible to participate, the security researchers had to be citizens of or be eligible to work in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, or New Zealand.

In the 29 days that the program ran, the researchers reported a total of 100 vulnerabilities, of which 65 were confirmed to be valid issues. Sixteen of them were uncovered less than 24 hours after the Hack the DTS challenge launched.

Researchers who reported valid security flaws received varying bug bounties. Eight of the reported vulnerabilities garnered the maximum bounty of $5,000. In all, the DoD paid out a total of $78,650 to the security researchers who discovered the vulnerabilities.

Crowd-sourced bug hunting programs such as those managed by HackerOne, Bugcrowd, and Synack have surged in popularity in recent years. The programs have attracted tens of thousands of security researchers from around the world willing to find and disclose security vulnerabilities in return for monetary rewards.

For many organizations, the programs have offered a way to let outside security researchers take a crack at their websites and apps in a relatively controlled and managed environment.

For security researchers, bug bounty programs have offered an opportunity to monetize their bug hunting and vulnerability discovery work. Bug hunters can earn anything from a few hundred dollars for low-level submissions to tens- and even hundreds of thousands of dollars for major bug discoveries.

For organizations, the programs have offered a way to discover and fix flaws they might have otherwise missed, often at considerably lower cost than recruiting full-time employees to do it.

The model, says HackerOne CEO Marten Mickos, has been gaining traction within government as well.

"When Hack the Pentagon was launched in 2016, it marked a change in the entire industry," he says. "The world's most powerful organization decided it needed the help of external hackers to be secure."

Other federal agencies and corporations worldwide have taken the cue from DoD and have launched similar hacker-powered security programs, he says. Last year's bill directing the Department of Homeland security to launch a Hack the DHS program is one example of the continued momentum. The Singapore Ministry of Defense, the European Commission, and the tax authorities in Finland are all other examples, Mickos says.

Related Content:

 

Jai Vijayan is a seasoned technology reporter with over 20 years of experience in IT trade journalism. He was most recently a Senior Editor at Computerworld, where he covered information security and data privacy issues for the publication. Over the course of his 20-year ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Devidlaws
50%
50%
Devidlaws,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/31/2018 | 5:05:08 AM
Router
Hey, I read the article it was great for everyone. My friends are suggested me to read it. So that they are true it was great. But if you want to know more about it then visit the site. Internet Explorer 10 customer service.
US Turning Up the Heat on North Korea's Cyber Threat Operations
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  9/16/2019
MITRE Releases 2019 List of Top 25 Software Weaknesses
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  9/17/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: "He's too shy to invite me out face to face!"
Current Issue
7 Threats & Disruptive Forces Changing the Face of Cybersecurity
This Dark Reading Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at the biggest emerging threats and disruptive forces that are changing the face of cybersecurity today.
Flash Poll
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
Your enterprise's cyber risk may depend upon the relationship between the IT team and the security team. Heres some insight on what's working and what isn't in the data center.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2018-17789
PUBLISHED: 2019-09-20
Prospecta Master Data Online (MDO) allows CSRF.
CVE-2019-11280
PUBLISHED: 2019-09-20
Pivotal Apps Manager, included in Pivotal Application Service versions 2.3.x prior to 2.3.18, 2.4.x prior to 2.4.14, 2.5.x prior to 2.5.10, and 2.6.x prior to 2.6.5, contains an invitations microservice which allows users to invite others to their organizations. A remote authenticated user can gain ...
CVE-2019-11326
PUBLISHED: 2019-09-20
An issue was discovered on Topcon Positioning Net-G5 GNSS Receiver devices with firmware 5.2.2. The web interface of the product is protected by a login. A guest is allowed to login. Once logged in as a guest, an attacker can browse a URL to read the password of the administrative user. The same pro...
CVE-2019-11327
PUBLISHED: 2019-09-20
An issue was discovered on Topcon Positioning Net-G5 GNSS Receiver devices with firmware 5.2.2. The web interface of the product has a local file inclusion vulnerability. An attacker with administrative privileges can craft a special URL to read arbitrary files from the device's files system.
CVE-2019-14814
PUBLISHED: 2019-09-20
There is heap-based buffer overflow in Linux kernel, all versions up to, excluding 5.3, in the marvell wifi chip driver in Linux kernel, that allows local users to cause a denial of service(system crash) or possibly execute arbitrary code.