Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bypassing Microsoft EMET 5.1 - yet again

The experts of the SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab managed to adapt the EMET 5.0 bypasses to also work against the latest Microsoft EMET 5.1 and already presented the first analysis results at ZeroNights 2014 in Russia.

A first and quick analysis showed that the new release of EMET 5.1 only adds code to prevent a specific bypass method to disable all ROP protections. Because the exploit was developed by SEC Consult to be very flexible and configurable it's possible to change the exploit configuration to use other developed bypass methods or to bypass all protections separately. To ensure a maximum of reliability the default configuration is set to bypass all protections separately and therefore no changes were required to bypass the current EMET 5.1 protections.

In addition, EMET 5.1 introduced a technique which should break our method to identify the base address of EMET.dll. Our method works by following the hooking code of critical functions from EMET until a pointer to the .text section of EMET.dll is found. Then a scan-down approach is used where the page size is subtracted from the pointer until the PE header is found.

To fix this technique Microsoft forces a hole between the PE header and the .text section of EMET.dll. As soon as the scan-down code tries to access this hole a segmentation fault occurs because of accessing unmapped memory.

Bypassing this technique is quite easy, instead of searching for the PE header the start of the .text section can be retrieved. After that the page size must be subtracted twice (the hole has a fixed size of one page as well as the memory associated with the PE header) to reach the imagebase. It was possible to analyse this new protection and modify the code within just 40 minutes by adding 10 additional lines of code.

Further details will be presented at DeepSec 2014 in Vienna, Austria, on 20th November and at 31C3 in Hamburg, Germany, end of December!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Microsoft EMET - Armor against zero-days bypassed again | Conference Slides

New methods make it possible to circumvent protection mechanisms of Microsoft EMET 5.0

The EMET (Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit) tool developed by Microsoft makes it possible for administrators and end users to retroactively equip applications with additional protection mechanisms. This enhanced protection is intended to prevent various attack techniques that are currently used by cyber attackers.

Security expert René Freingruber of the SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab has developed numerous methods to get around the basic protection mechanisms of EMET in all currently available versions. If a cyber-attacker were to use these new bypass methods, serious attacks could be carried out. A software product protected with EMET as a workaround affected by a critical zero-day vulnerability could, for example, fall under the control of attackers.

Microsoft was informed of this by SEC Consult and is working on an improvement to the protection methods.

The experts of the SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab advise you to not view EMET as an unbeatable protection measure, because the tool can definitely be bypassed with the help of newly discovered methods.

SEC Consult considers it as necessary for software manufacturers to make the development of applications more secure and to regularly test their software extensively for application security.

Demo video


Detailed slides from previous conferences, where the research has been presented by René Freingruber, are available here:

RuxCon, 11-12 October 2014

ToorCon, 25-26 October 2014

ZeroNights, 13-14 November, 2014

NorthSec 21-24 May, 2015

media ccc

Microsoft Blogpost

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Back To The Future: Unix Wildcards Gone Wild

On June, 25th 2014 DefenseCode released a whitepaper regarding a vulnerability
affecting all *nix derivatives:

Basically, this bug allows a user to affect shell commands issued by some other user
by creating files with special filenames. If the other user is a privileged user like
root this would theoretically lead to an elevation of privileges aka "local root" or
"local privilege elevation".

The paper contains some basic examples for different unix commands and their impact
if used in combination with wildcards.

At a first blush, the vulnerability does not seem to be very critical. It looks like
that it would only affect shell scripts badly coded and afterwards executed by some
higher privileged user.

But if you dig a little bit deeper and think about all the different *nix operating
systems, their boot- and shutdown-sequences and their local servers running with high
privileges, one will realize very fast, that this vulnerability has a huge security
impact on most unix like operating systems.

This bug affects Android, iOS, OS X and all the embedded solutions running on Linux.
In addition to this you have Oracle, RedHat and other commercial Linux based systems.

Many of these operating systems have different shell utilities and tools accepting
even more command line options.

A short check on Ubuntu gave us at least 5 commands, besides the ones mentioned in
the whitepaper, vulnerable to this specific problem.

In addition to this you have to imagine Cloud service- or web hosting providers
running cron jobs for backups and similar tasks of their users' data.

This bug has a very high potential when further analyzed.

Since this bug originates from a design problem it will be very interesting on how
operating system vendors address this problem. It is something you cannot fix with a
simple patch. The way on how the system interacts with files has to be completely

Credits for identifying those issues go to Leon Juranic <leon@defensecode.com>

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

SECurity Message Service

Critical vulnerabilities completely compromise ‘Symantec Endpoint Protection’

The award-winning [1] and longtime leader of Gartner report league tables [2]; ‘Symantec Endpoint Protection’, developed by the US-based Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC), was shipped without removing several critical security vulnerabilities [3]. The vulnerabilities were discovered in a routine ‘99er’ security crash test by experts of the SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab (www.sec-consult.com). In a 99er security crash test, SEC Consult white-hat experts evaluate the product security for the maximum of 99 working hours to determine if this specific release of a product can be compromised by attackers.

The unremoved vulnerabilities enable state-sponsored or criminal hackers to take full control of the ‘Symantec Endpoint Protection Manager’ server. With the full control of the server the attackers could obliterate the endpoint protection provided by the Symantec solution as they would have full access to the protection features of the endpoints. SEC Consult experts recommend immediately installing the update released by the vendor to counter these vulnerabilities [4].

Since mid-2012 SEC Consult has identified several critical vulnerabilities in other Symantec products during routine security tests. A Support Backdoor was identified in Symantec Messaging Gateway [5] and for the Symantec Web Gateway [6]. The vulnerabilities found enabled attackers to run commands with the privileges of the ‘root’ operating system user and to perform surveillance activities.

SEC Consult strongly advises that customers of Symantec products should demand from the vendor exhaustive security tests by (European) security experts before the implementation of the respective software product.

SEC Consult generally recommends routine security crash tests for standard software products to prevent the procurement of ‘toxic’ (i.e. heavily insecure) software. Toxic Software contains severe security vulnerabilities and poses a severe and highly probable risk to the confidentiality, availability and integrity of its owner.

Further technical information can be found in the SEC Consult Security Advisory [3].

For further information please contact:
Johannes Greil
Head of SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab