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Hundreds of Juniper units weak to unauthenticated RCE flaw

Hundreds of Juniper units weak to unauthenticated RCE flaw

An estimated 12,000 Juniper SRX firewalls and EX switches are weak to a fileless distant code execution flaw that attackers can exploit with out authentication.

In August, Juniper disclosed quite a few ‘PHP setting variant manipulation’ (CVE-2023-36844/CVE-2023-36845) and ‘Lacking Authentication for Important Perform’ (CVE-2023-36846/CVE-2023-36847) vulnerabilities that by themselves solely had a ‘medium’ severity score of 5.3.

Nevertheless, when chained collectively, these vulnerabilities grew to become a vital distant code execution flaw with a score of 9.8.

In a later technical report, watchTowr Labs launched a PoC that chained the CVE-2023-36845 and CVE-2023-36846 flaws, permitting the researchers to remotely execute code by importing two recordsdata to a weak gadget.

Immediately, VulnCheck vulnerability researcher Jacob Baines launched one other PoC exploit that solely makes use of CVE-2023-36845, bypassing the necessity to add recordsdata whereas nonetheless attaining distant code execution.

As a part of Baines’ report, the researcher shared a free scanner on GitHub to assist establish weak deployments, exhibiting hundreds of weak units uncovered on the web.

“On this weblog, we demonstrated how CVE-2023-36845, a vulnerability flagged as “Medium” severity by Juniper, can be utilized to remotely execute arbitrary code with out authentication,” explains VulnCheck’s report.

“We have turned a multi-step (however excellent) exploit into an exploit that may be written utilizing a single curl command and seems to have an effect on extra (older) programs.”

The influence of the recognized safety downside is in depth and way more extreme than its “medium” CVSS score suggests, and admins should take quick motion to remediate the state of affairs.

The brand new exploit

Baines says he bought an previous Juniper SRX210 firewall for testing the exploit however discovered his gadget didn’t have the do_fileUpload() performance required to add recordsdata to the gadget.

This successfully broke watchTowr’s exploit chain, inflicting the researcher to see if there was one other technique to obtain distant code execution.

Baines discovered that you may bypass the necessity to add two recordsdata on the goal servers by manipulating setting variables.

The Juniper firewall’s Appweb net server processes person HTTP requests through stdin when operating a CGI script.

Exploiting this, attackers can trick the system into recognizing a pseudo “file,”/dev/fd/0, and by adjusting the PHPRC setting variable and the HTTP request, they will show delicate information.

Subsequent, VulnCheck harnessed PHP’s ‘auto_prepend_file’ and ‘allow_url_include’ options to run arbitrary PHP code through the info:// protocol with out importing any recordsdata.

That stated, the severity score of CVE-2023-36845, which is 5.4, ought to now be re-evaluated to a a lot larger vital rating because of its potential to attain distant code execution with out some other flaws.

Proof of concept (PoC) curl command
Proof of idea curl command (VulnCheck)

Affect and danger

The CVE-2023-36845 vulnerability impacts the next variations of Junos OS on EX Collection and SRX Collection:

  • All variations earlier than 20.4R3-S8
  • 21.1 model 21.1R1 and later variations
  • 21.2 variations earlier than 21.2R3-S6
  • 21.3 variations earlier than 21.3R3-S5
  • 21.4 variations earlier than 21.4R3-S5
  • 22.1 variations earlier than 22.1R3-S3
  • 22.2 variations earlier than 22.2R3-S2
  • 22.3 variations earlier than 22.3R2-S2, 22.3R3
  • 22.4 variations earlier than 22.4R2-S1, 22.4R3

The seller launched safety updates that addressed the vulnerability on August 17, 2023. Nevertheless, the low severity score the flaw obtained did not elevate alarms on the impacted customers, lots of whom may need opted to postpone its utility.

VulnCheck’s community scans confirmed 14,951 Juniper with internet-exposed net interfaces. From a pattern measurement of three,000 units, Baines discovered that 79% have been weak to this RCE flaw.

Shodan scan result
Shodan scan end result (VulnCheck)

If that share is utilized to all uncovered units, we could also be taking a look at 11,800 weak units on the web.

Lastly, the report mentions that Shadowserver and GreyNoise have seen attackers probing Junos OS endpoints, so hackers are already exploring the chance to leverage CVE-2023-36845 in assaults.

Subsequently, Juniper admins should apply these updates as quickly as attainable, as they could possibly be used to realize preliminary entry to company networks.

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