Feeds

Rogue ActiveX controls menace users

A new class at Vulnerability High

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Flaws in ActiveX controls are being increasingly used to run security exploits.

Arbitrary file overwrite and deletion flaws, typically exploited through ActiveX controls, are well on the way to becoming a new class of security flaw, according to net security firm Symantec.

"These vulnerabilities exist particularly because of a registered ActiveX control failing to restrict which domains may load the control for execution. An attack exploiting this vulnerability can lead to arbitrary code execution by a remote attacker," a blog posting by Symantec researcher Parveen Vashishtha warns.

Since May, Symantec has logged 40 vulnerabilities of this type in applications from vendors including VMware, Microsoft Visual Studio, NCTSoft, and HP Photo Digital Imaging. The flaws are easy enough to exploit. The approach also carries additional benefits for hackers.

For example, a malicious payload of a batch file may come enclosed within a signed ActiveX control, which means that user intervention to approve the actions of a malicious payload may not be required. Typical exploitation scenarios include tricking a user into visiting a maliciously-controlled website.

Fortunately, by default, Internet Explorer blocks ActiveX controls. But consumers should be wary about allowing anything except trusted ActiveX controls. Third-party security products can also defend again the threat, which is explained in greater depth in a posting by Symantec here. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
YouTube, Amazon and Yahoo! caught in malvertising mess
Cisco says 'Kyle and Stan' attack is spreading through compromised ad networks
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
China hacked US Army transport orgs TWENTY TIMES in ONE YEAR
FBI et al knew of nine hacks - but didn't tell TRANSCOM
Microsoft to patch ASP.NET mess even if you don't
We know what's good for you, because we made the mess says Redmond
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.