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Oracle patches another actively-exploited WebLogic zero-day

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Oracle released an out-of-band security update to fix a vulnerability in WebLogic servers that was being actively exploited in the real world to hijack users’ systems.

Attacks using this vulnerability were first reported by Chinese security firm Knownsec 404 Team on June 15, last Saturday.

The initial report from Knownsec claimed the attacks exploited a brand new WebLogic bug to bypass patches for a previous zero-day tracked as CVE-2019-2725 — which was also exploited in the wild for days in April before Oracle released an emergency security patch for that one as well.

But in a blog post on Tuesday, John Heimann, Oracle’s Security Program Vice-President, said this was an incorrect assessment, and that the new attacks are exploiting a separate vulnerability that had nothing to do with the zero-day from April.

A 9.8 out of 10 severity score

The new zero-day received the CVE-2019-2729 identifier, and a severity score of 9.8 out of a maximum of 10 (score identical with the April zero-day).

Both zero-days are somewhat similar, albeit the problematic code resides in different parts of the WebLogic code. Both zero-days are a bug in the data deserialization process that happens inside WebLogic servers, when content is reverted from binary form back into its original form. Both zero-days allow attackers to exploit this process and run code on vulnerable systems.

The attacker doesn’t need to know a remote server’s credentials to run the exploit, which means attacks can be automated and launched against any Internet-accessible WebLogic instance, a number that currently stands at nearly 42,000.

Knownsec said the current CVE-2019-2729 attacks are only targeting JDK 1.6.x compatible systems, which reduces the number of targeted servers.

Oracle WebLogic has been a popular target for hackers

Oracle WebLogic exploits are some of the most popular exploits today [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8]. CVE-2019-2729 will almost certainly join CVE-2019-2725, CVE-2018-2893, CVE-2018-2628, and CVE-2017-10271 as one of the most exploited WebLogic vulnerabilities in the wild.

For the majority of these attacks, hackers are targeting corporate networks — where most WebLogic servers are usually installed — to plant crypto-mining malware for their financial benefit.

Oracle listed WebLogic versions 10.3.6.0.0, 12.1.3.0.0, and 12.2.1.3.0 as impacted by the bug. The company released yesterday security fixes for affected versions.

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The Five Pillars of (Azure) Cloud-based Application Security

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This 1-hour webinar from GigaOm brings together experts in Azure cloud application migration and security, featuring GigaOm analyst Jon Collins and special guests from Fortinet, Director of Product Marketing for Public Cloud, Daniel Schrader, and Global Director of Public Cloud Architecture and Engineering, Aidan Walden.

These interesting times have accelerated the drive towards digital transformation, application rationalization, and migration to cloud-based architectures. Enterprise organizations are looking to increase efficiency, but without impacting performance or increasing risk, either from infrastructure resilience or end-user behaviors.

Success requires a combination of best practice and appropriate use of technology, depending on where the organization is on its cloud journey. Elements such as zero-trust access and security-driven networking need to be deployed in parallel with security-first operations, breach prevention and response.

If you are looking to migrate applications to the cloud and want to be sure your approach maximizes delivery whilst minimizing risk, this webinar is for you.

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Data Management and Secure Data Storage for the Enterprise

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This free 1-hour webinar from GigaOm Research brings together experts in data management and security, featuring GigaOm Analyst Enrico Signoretti and special guest from RackTop Systems, Jonathan Halstuch. The discussion will focus on data storage and how to protect data against cyberattacks.

Most of the recent news coverage and analysis of cyberattacks focus on hackers getting access and control of critical systems. Yet rarely is it mentioned that the most valuable asset for the organizations under attack is the data contained in these systems.

In this webinar, you will learn about the risks and costs of a poor data security management approach, and how to improve your data storage to prevent and mitigate the consequences of a compromised infrastructure.

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CISO Podcast: Talking Anti-Phishing Solutions

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Simon Gibson earlier this year published the report, “GigaOm Radar for Phishing Prevention and Detection,” which assessed more than a dozen security solutions focused on detecting and mitigating email-borne threats and vulnerabilities. As Gibson noted in his report, email remains a prime vector for attack, reflecting the strategic role it plays in corporate communications.

Earlier this week, Gibson’s report was a featured topic of discussions on David Spark’s popular CISO Security Vendor Relationship Podcast. In it, Spark interviewed a pair of chief information security officers—Mike Johnson, CISO for SalesForce, and James Dolph, CISO for Guidewire Software—to get their take on the role of anti-phishing solutions.

“I want to first give GigaOm some credit here for really pointing out the need to decide what to do with detections,” Johnson said when asked for his thoughts about selecting an anti-phishing tool. “I think a lot of companies charge into a solution for anti-phishing without thinking about what they are going to do when the thing triggers.”

As Johnson noted, the needs and vulnerabilities of a large organization aligned on Microsoft 365 are very different from those of a smaller outfit working with GSuite. A malicious Excel macro-laden file, for example, poses a credible threat to a Microsoft shop and therefore argues for a detonation solution to detect and neutralize malicious payloads before they can spread and morph. On the other hand, a smaller company is more exposed to business email compromise (BEC) attacks, since spending authority is often spread among many employees in these businesses.

Gibson’s radar report describes both in-line and out-of-band solutions, but Johnson said cloud-aligned infrastructures argue against traditional in-line schemes.

“If you put an in-line solution in front of [Microsoft] 365 or in front of GSuite, you are likely decreasing your reliability, because you’ve now introduced this single point of failure. Google and Microsoft have this massive amount of reliability that is built in,” Johnson said.

So how should IT decision makers go about selecting an anti-phishing solution? Dolph answered that question with a series of questions of his own:

“Does it nail the basics? Does it fit with the technologies we have in place? And then secondarily, is it reliable, is it tunable, is it manageable?” he asked. “Because it can add a lot overhead, especially if you have a small team if these tools are really disruptive to the email flow.”

Dolph concluded by noting that it’s important for solutions to provide insight that can help organizations target their protections, as well as support both training and awareness around threats. Finally, he urged organizations to consider how they can measure the effectiveness of solutions.

“I may look at other solutions in the future and how do I compare those solutions to the benchmark of what we have in place?”

Listen to the Podcast: CISO Podcast

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