Feeds

Attacks exploit Windows DNS server flaw

Only workarounds for now

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Attackers are targeting a flaw in the DNS service for Windows server OSes that could hijack the computers that run them, Microsoft warns. The software behemoth advises admins to employ workarounds pending completion of its investigation.

The vulnerability affects Windows 2000 Server, Service Pack 4 and SP 1 and SP2 versions of Windows Server 2003, according to this Microsoft advisory. DNS functionality exposed over port 53 is not at risk. Nor are Windows 2000 Professional, Windows XP and Windows Vista.

An attack can be carried out by executing a stack-based buffer overrun in the DNS Server's remote procedure call (RPC) interface. A successful exploit, in which a specially crafted RPC packet is sent to a targeted machine, could allow an attacker to run code in the security context of the DNS, which by default runs full privileges.

Without elaborating, Microsoft said it is aware of "limited attacks" using the DNS flaw. Fortunately, the SANS Internet Storm Center was a bit more forthcoming, saying it has learned of two US universities that have been attacked, in each case in early April from a source located at 61.63.227.125.

According to SANS, the attack commences with a TCP scan of ports 1024-2048, followed by a TCP connection to the port running the vulnerable RPC service. A Shellcode binds to TCP port 1100 and a VBscript is uploaded, which downloads an executable DUP.EXE. Voila: the machine is pwnd.

It's been a busy few weeks for Microsoft's security peeps. Last week, the company rushed out an emergency update to patch a critical hole in the way Windows handles customized cursors. On Tuesday, the company released a host of fixes as part of its monthly patch cycle. But even before savvy users had a chance to install them, miscreants were already tinkering with several new exploits targeting Microsoft products.

Microsoft has yet to announce plans for a patch. In the meantime, it is providing instructions for workarounds, which include disabling remote access of DNS using RPC. Those who want to automate the disabling of RPC from a large number of domain controllers can find help here. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
Reddit users discover iOS malware threat
'Unflod Baby Panda' looks to snatch Apple IDs
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.