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Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

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Bringing you news and commentary on solutions and strategies for protecting critical IT infrastructure in the context of your business.

BlackHole toolkit targets Microsoft XML Core Services flaw

Posted August 1, 2012    Sarah Lieber

Blackhole is a popular exploit kit used to inject malware onto PCs that visit an exploited site, or are redirected to such a site from another, compromised website.  As hackers get bolder they use these types of toolkits to compromise computer networks.  This allows less sophisticated individuals and organizations to compromise computer networks since these kits are relatively easy to attain and leverage.

The Blackhole exploit toolkit has been updated to take advantage of a Microsoft XML Core Services flaw, CVE-2012-1889.  The vulnerability applies to numerous supported Microsoft operating systems as well as some versions of Microsoft Office.  For more detailed information on this vulnerability and the list of patches provided by Microsoft, check out a recent blog post by Marc Maiffret. Or you can listen to the July 2012 Vulnerability Experts Forum (VEF).

BeyondTrust’s vulnerability management solution, Retina, not only identifies the vulnerability but also correlates it to the Blackhole exploit toolkit putting ‘Security in Context’ to ensure that security professionals and operational teams are made aware that there are known exploits and tool kits that put this vulnerability into a higher risk category.

In the above examples we see under the ‘exploit’ tab that there is a known exploit in the Exploit DB.  In the case where personnel resources are limited, this information is critical in determining where to apply resources for remediation.

Retina further uncovers the context of the vulnerability by including whether or not there are known malware toolkits leveraging the exploit.

As we mentioned above, these toolkits make it relatively ‘easy’ for nefarious individuals and organizations to quickly set-up websites that exploit this and other vulnerabilities.  Locating which vulnerabilities are included in these toolkits is critical to understanding where to focus resources for remediation and serve as the ‘low hanging fruit’ that the operational teams can focus on first from a remediation efforts perspective.

In addition to the details located in Retina CS, Retina Insight’s threat analyzers can help organizations quickly locate these low hanging fruit to determine the impact of remediating these vulnerabilities.

Users can leverage the built-in Risk Profiles (as shown above) or…

Users can also leverage the Risk Profile builder and create their own custom Profiles.  In this case I’m creating a profile that looks for Blackhole. Check out our blog post on Threat Analyzers, to find out more.

As you can see Retina provides organizations with numerous ways to quickly pare down vulnerabilities that put their organization at risk.  Additionally Retina CS provides remediation teams with the ability to deploy patches within the same console for complete vulnerability lifecycle management. Try a free trial of Retina CS now.

The latest audits database contains the following audits associated with MS12-043:

[16728] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2721693
[16739] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2721693 x64
[16730] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2721691
[16744] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2721691 x64
[16729] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 6.1
[16745] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 6.1 x64
[16731] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 6.0
[16746] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 6.0 x64
[16732] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 5.2
[16747] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 5.2 x64
[16733] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 5.1
[16748] Microsoft XML Core Services Remote Code Execution (2722479) – KB2719985 5.1 x64

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Additional articles

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6 things I like about Gartner’s Cyber Resiliency Strategy

Posted August 27, 2015    Nigel Hedges

There were 6 key principles, or recommendations, that Gartner suggested were important drivers towards a great cyber resiliency posture. I commented more than once during the conference that many of these things were not new. They are all important recommendations that are best when placed together and given to senior management and the board – a critical element of organisations that desperately need to “get it”.

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Why Customers Choose PowerBroker: Flexible Deployment Options

Posted August 26, 2015    Scott Lang

BeyondTrust commissioned a study of our customer base in early 2015 to determine how we are different from other alternatives in the market. What we learned was that there were six key differentiators that separate BeyondTrust from other solution providers in the market. We call it the PowerBroker difference,

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On Demand Webinar: Security Risk of Mac OS X in the Enterprise

Posted August 20, 2015    BeyondTrust Software

In the last several years, Mac administrators have come to realize that they may be just as vulnerable to exploits and malware as most other operating systems. New malware and adware is released all the time, and there have been serious vulnerabilities patched by Apple in the past several years, some of which may afford attackers full control of your systems.

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