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Snort Vulnerability Leads Various Cisco Products Exposed to Vulnerabilities

 


Earlier this week, the company told its customers that several Cisco products have been exposed to DoS (Denial of Service) attacks due to Snort detection engine vulnerability. Known as CVE-2021-1285, the flaw is rated high severity, and hackers can exploit it. The attacker must be on the layer 2 domain similar to the victim, as to compel a device to fall to a DoS attack via sending it specifically made Ethernet frames. As per Cisco, the flaw exists in the Ethernet Frame Decoder part of the Snort. 

The vulnerability affects all variants of the famous intrusion detection and intrusion prevention system (IDS/IPS) made before 2.9.17, which has a bug patch. According to Security Week, "Snort is an open-source tool developed by Cisco that provides real-time traffic analysis and packet logging capabilities. It has been downloaded millions of times and it has more than 600,000 registered users, with Cisco claiming that it’s the most widely deployed IPS in the world. The alpha version of Snort 3 was announced in December 2014 and now it has finally become generally available."

Catalyst Edge software and platform, 1000v series Cloud Services Router products, and Integrated Service Router (ISR) are said to be affected by the CVE-2021-1285. But they'll be affected only if they are using a version of Cisco UTD Snort IPS engine software that is vulnerable for IOS XE or Cisco UTD Engine for IOS XE SD-WAN, and if these are configured to pass through the Ethernet frames to Snort. According to Cisco, the flaw is linked to FTD (Firepower Threat Defense) issue that was patched in October last year. 

The vulnerabilities were found during solving a support case, however, no evidence has been found to point that these vulnerabilities were exploited in any attacks. Besides this, on Wednesday Cisco issued an advisory on few other vulnerabilities, of medium severe ratings. "These impact Webex, SD-WAN, ASR, Network Services Orchestrator, IP phones, and Email Security Appliance products, and they can lead to information disclosure, path traversal, authorization bypass, DoS attacks, privilege escalation, and SQL injection," says SecurityWeek.

Malware escalation in Q2 2020 : HTTP and Java based script attacks on the rise




While Q2 of this year saw an overall 8% decrease in malware attacks, 70% of them were zero-day attack (attacks occurring after the discovery of a vulnerability and before the release of a patch) - a 12% increase from the previous quarter. After the zero-day attacks, HTTP based attacks marked up to be 34%, and consequently organizations that do not inspect incoming traffic will be blind to one-third of attacks.

 But, there is some good news- encryption attacks reduced to 64% from Q1. Though it comes with a catch, while encryption threats decreased HTTP attacks made a massive jump even after many organizations equip HTTP inspection in their security intel.

 “Businesses aren’t the only ones that have adjusted operations due to the global COVID-19 pandemic – cybercriminals have too,” said Corey Nachreiner, CTO of WatchGuard, on the report.

 “The rise in sophisticated attacks, despite the fact that overall malware detection declined in Q2 2020, likely due to the shift to remote work, shows that attackers are turning to more evasive tactics that traditional signature-based anti-malware defenses simply can’t catch."

  “Every organization should be prioritizing behavior-based threat detection, cloud-based sand boxing, and a layered set of security services to protect both the core network, as well as the remote workforce.” 

Malware detected in Q2

Java Script-Based Attacks 

 Script attacks like Trojan. Gnaeus and J.S. PopUnder were among the top malware in the last quarter. Both of the access to the user's browser and settings and redirect them. 

 Updating your browser, preventing the browser from loading pages from unknown resources can help combat this malware. 

 Encrypted Excel files 

This malware uses an encrypted Excel file with a default password and once opened- the file automatically runs a VBA script. 

Abracadabra is one such Trojan malware that uses a default password to bypass security as the file is encrypted and later decrypted in Excel. 

 Dos makes a comeback 

 A very old (six years), Dos attacks affecting WordPress and Drupal made in the top 10 malware attack list in Q2. Though these were high in volume, they were concentrated in regions of Germany and Europe.