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Recent Vulnerability Announcements

Service AffectedSecurity
Start TimeMay 15th 2019 10:00 am
DescriptionS1: Remote Desktop Services Remote Code Execution Vulnerability

What is the Issue

A remote code execution vulnerability exists in Remote Desktop Services – formerly known as Terminal Services – when an unauthenticated attacker connects to the target system using RDP and sends specially crafted requests.

Vulnerability Details

This vulnerability is pre-authentication and requires no user interaction. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could execute arbitrary code on the target system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

To exploit this vulnerability, an attacker would need to send a specially crafted request to the target systems Remote Desktop Service via RDP. The risk to the Servers is slightly higher than the laptop devices.

 

Our Prognosis

Microsoft have released an update which addresses the vulnerability by correcting how Remote Desktop Services handles connection requests. We would like to prioritise the patching of windows servers. Due to the simplicity and low disruption involved in laptop patching, we can work alongside our customers to roll this out.

 

S2: Cisco Secure Boot Hardware Tampering Vulnerability

What is the Issue

Our Cisco Partners have identified a potential security vulnerability within the firmware of some of their devices, including routers and ASA Firewalls.

 

Vulnerability Details

Cisco state that the flaws allow hackers to deceive a part of the product hardware that checks whether firmware updates come from legitimate sources. A vulnerability in the logic that handles access control to one of the hardware components in Cisco's proprietary Secure Boot implementation could allow an authenticated, local attacker to write a modified firmware image to the component. This vulnerability affects multiple Cisco products that support hardware-based Secure Boot functionality. Our investigations have concluded there is no risk to our wider customer base.

 

Our Prognosis

Remote access is required to exploit the vulnerability in this particular firmware. All of our customers equipment is locked down via our own internal TACACS authentication processes. No unauthorised users have elevated privileges which grant them access to network devices. We will continue to work closely with Cisco on this matter and look to further communicate when a firmware update is made available to mitigate against this vulnerability.

 

S3: Intel Chip Exploit – Zombie Load

 

What is the Issue

Security researchers have found a new class of vulnerabilities in Intel chips which, if exploited, can be used to steal sensitive information directly from the processor.

 

Vulnerability Details

The bugs are reminiscent of the Meltdown and Spectre exploits, which exploited a weakness in speculative execution, an important part of how modern processors work. Speculative execution helps processors predict to a certain degree what an application or operating system might need next and in the near-future, making the app run faster and more efficient. The processor will execute its predictions if they’re needed, or discard them if they’re not. We believe server environments are higher risk than desktop environments.

 

Our Prognosis

We will be patching our hypervisor and hypercloud shared services with immediate effect. We will be then be liaising with our customers on those dedicated hypervisor environments to agree patch scheduling. Provided other security practices are in place, regular and general patch management will be sufficient to mitigate against the risk. Patches that are available from Microsoft with will be agreed at the next patch cycle.
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