BeyondTrust

Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

Welcome to Security in Context

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

Java/IE 0days Put to Bed

Posted January 14, 2013    BeyondTrust Research Team

Over the past two days, two actively exploited 0day vulnerabilities got patched. Yesterday, Oracle addressed the 0day in Java, CVE-2013-0422, with an new update, Java 7u11. Today, Microsoft addressed the 0day in Internet Explorer 6-9, CVE-2012-4792, with MS13-008.

In addition to fixing the 0day vulnerability, the Java update changes the default security level setting from medium to high. This means that users will be prompted before running unsigned or self-signed Java applets or Java Web Start applications are run. With this update, silent exploitation will no longer be an option to attackers when using unsigned or self-signed Java code for exploitation. Now, if attackers choose to exploit Java vulnerabilities, even more social engineering will be required since users will need to not only open a malicious web page, but they will also need to click past the new security prompt prior to being exploited.

The code signing mechanism for Java code uses some of the principles as code signing used in app stores, such as the Windows 8 App Store or the Mac App Store. Code signing is a requirement in the app stores, while signing Java code merely prevents an alert shown to the user, but the choice to even show an alert is a step in the right direction for Java. To verify that a piece of software really was made by the author, a digital signature is applied to the software that is then run on the user’s system. With this security update from Oracle, attackers will need to either use a fraudulent certificate or acquire the ability to sign code on behalf of another entity, similar to what has been seen with certificate authorities like DigiNotar and Comodo being compromised for the same purpose. While a barrier is now posed to the attacker, users love clicking buttons, so it won’t stop determined users from being exploited. In any case, it will be easier to handle malware by simply revoking the fraudulent certificates, assuming Java properly leverages certificate revocations.

Needless to say, since these patches address vulnerabilities being exploited in the wild, it is critical that the patches are deployed as soon as possible.

Tags:
, , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Additional articles

Are Your Data Security Efforts Focused in the Right Area?

Posted January 28, 2015    Scott Lang

Vormetric Data Security recently released an insider threat report, with research conducted by HarrisPoll and analyzed by Ovum. Based on the survey responses, it is apparent that there is still a great deal of insecurity over data. However, the results also show that there may be misplaced investments to address those insecurities. I will explain…

Tags:
ghost

GHOST Vulnerability…Scary Indeed

Posted January 28, 2015    BeyondTrust Research Team

A vulnerability discovered by Qualys security researchers has surfaced within the GNU C Library that affects virtually all Linux operating systems. The vulnerability lies within the various gethostbyname*() functions and, as such, has been dubbed “GHOST.” GHOST is particularly nasty considering remote, arbitrary code execution can be achieved. In an effort to avoid taxing DNS lookups, glibc developers introduced…

Tags:
,
dave-shackleford-headshot

Your New Years Resolution: Controlling Privileged Users

Posted January 27, 2015    Dave Shackleford

Is 2015 the year you get a better handle on security? The news last year was grim – so much so, in fact, that many in the information security community despaired a bit. Really, the end-of-the-year infosec cocktail parties were a bit glum. OK, let’s be honest, infosec cocktail parties are usually not that wild…

Tags:
, , ,