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Steven Seeley of Source Incite has identified a privilege elevation vulnerability in the Cogent DataHub application produced by Cogent Real-Time Systems, Inc. Cogent has produced a new version to mitigate this vulnerability. Steven Seeley has tested the new version to validate that it resolves the vulnerability.
Cogent reports that the vulnerability affects the following products:
- Cogent DataHub version 7.3.9 and prior.
Attackers could exploit this vulnerability to elevate their privileges from guest or user to system.
Impact to individual organizations depends on many factors that are unique to each organization. NCCIC/ICS-CERT recommends that organizations evaluate the impact of this vulnerability based on their operational environment, architecture, and product implementation.
Cogent is a Canadian-based company that produces middleware applications that are used to interface with control systems.
The Cogent DataHub product is a real-time middleware solution and is deployed across several sectors including Chemical, Commercial Facilities, Critical Manufacturing, Energy, Financial Services, and others. This product is used worldwide, but primarily in the United States and Great Britain.
IMPROPER PRIVILEGE MANAGEMENTa
Users or guests may escalate their privileges by changing an accessible file on the system.
This vulnerability is not exploitable remotely and cannot be exploited without user interaction. The exploit is only triggered when a local user runs the vulnerable application and loads the malformed file.
EXISTENCE OF EXPLOIT
No known public exploits specifically target this vulnerability.
An attacker with a low skill would be able to exploit this vulnerability.
Cogent has fixed this vulnerability in Version 7.3.10 of DataHub. This is a free upgrade for any user running V7.x. Cogent advises that users upgrade to Cogent DataHub Version 7.3.10 from:
ICS-CERT recommends that users take defensive measures to minimize the risk of exploitation of these vulnerabilities. Specifically, users should:
- Minimize network exposure for all control system devices and/or systems, and ensure that they are not accessible from the Internet.
- Locate control system networks and remote devices behind firewalls, and isolate them from the business network.
- When remote access is required, use secure methods, such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), recognizing that VPNs may have vulnerabilities and should be updated to the most current version available. Also recognize that VPN is only as secure as the connected devices.
ICS-CERT recommends that users take the following measures to protect themselves from social engineering attacks:
- Do not click web links or open unsolicited attachments in email messages.
- Refer to Recognizing and Avoiding Email Scamsd for more information on avoiding email scams.
- Refer to Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attackse for more information on social engineering attacks.
ICS-CERT reminds organizations to perform proper impact analysis and risk assessment prior to deploying defensive measures.
ICS-CERT also provides a section for control systems security recommended practices on the ICS-CERT web page at: http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/content/recommended-practices. Several recommended practices are available for reading and download, including Improving Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity with Defense-in-Depth Strategies.
Additional mitigation guidance and recommended practices are publicly available in the ICS‑CERT Technical Information Paper, ICS-TIP-12-146-01B--Targeted Cyber Intrusion Detection and Mitigation Strategies, that is available for download from the ICS-CERT web site (http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/).
Organizations observing any suspected malicious activity should follow their established internal procedures and report their findings to ICS-CERT for tracking and correlation against other incidents.
- aCWE-269: Improper Privilege Management, http://cwe.mitre.org/data/definitions/269.html, web site last accessed March 24, 2016.
- bNVD, http://web.nvd.nist.gov/view/vuln/detail?vulnId=CVE-2016-2288, NIST uses this advisory to create the CVE web site report. This web site will be active sometime after publication of this advisory.
- cCVSS Calculator, https://www.first.org/cvss/calculator/3.0#CVSS:3.0/AV:N/AC:H/PR:L/UI:N/S:U/C:H/I:H/A:H, web site last accessed March 24, 2016.
- dRecognizing and Avoiding Email Scams, http://www.us-cert.gov/reading_room/emailscams_0905.pdf, web site last accessed March 24, 2016.
- eNational Cyber Alert System Cyber Security Tip ST04-014, http://www.us-cert.gov/cas/tips/ST04-014.html, web site last accessed March 24, 2016.
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