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CISA to Federal Agencies: Patch VMware Products Now or Take Them Offline

Last month attackers quickly reverse-engineered VMware patches to launch RCE attacks. CISA warns it's going to happen again.

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) has issued an emergency directive requiring federal civilian executive branch agencies to update their VMware products impacted by a pair of new vulnerabilities or remove them from their networks.

The VMware bugs – CVE-2022-22972 and CVE-2022-22973 – expose several VMware products to remote code-execution (RCE) attacks. 

CISA said that last month, within just 48 hours of VMware patching its VMware Workspace ONE Access (Access), VMware Identity Manager (vIDM), VMware vRealize Automation (vRA), VMware Cloud Foundation, and vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager, advanced persistent threat (APT) actors were able to reverse-engineer the updates to launch attacks. 

"These vulnerabilities pose an unacceptable risk to federal network security," CISA director said Jen Easterly in a statement. "CISA has issued this emergency directive to ensure that federal civilian agencies take urgent action to protect their networks. We also strongly urge every organization – large and small – to follow the federal government's lead and take similar steps to safeguard their networks."