Feeds

Major Linux security glitch lets hackers in at Claranet

10-minute swoop to close new hole

Top three mobile application threats

A major security vulnerability in the Linux kernel, which was revealed on Sunday, has claimed its first confirmed UK victim in business ISP Claranet.

Hackers used a bug in the sys_vmsplice kernel call, which handles virtual memory management, to gain root privileges and replace Claranet customers' index.html files with the hacker's calling card.

The exploit was noticed at about 6pm on Tuesday.

Claranet said: "Malicious activity related to the vulnerability was detected on Claranet's shared hosting platform. Within 10 minutes Claranet contained and halted the malicious activity, and locked down the platform to prevent further damage.

"The shared hosting platform was fully patched with the vendor's updates by 10am on Wednesday. Less than one per cent of the total web sites hosted on the Claranet platform were affected and all were restored to their original states by 1pm on Wednesday 13 February."

The (potentially tricky) hacking process was dumbed down by the publication of exploit code earlier this week, Linux-Watch notes.

Security notification firm Secunia reports that switching to either version 2.6.23.16 or 2.6.24.2 of the Linux kernel guards against attack. Hotfixes designed to plug the vulnerability short of upgrading the kernel have also been released.

The affected system call first appeared in version 2.6.17 of the Linux kernel, but wasn't left open to exploit until changes were made with the 2.6.23 version.

Linux vendors are working on a permanent fix for the problem. Claranet emphasised that it keeps a close eye on announcements of new vulnerabilities and acts swiftly to patch them. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
OpenBSD founder wants to bin buggy OpenSSL library, launches fork
One Heartbleed vuln was too many for Theo de Raadt
Got Windows 8.1 Update yet? Get ready for YET ANOTHER ONE – rumor
Leaker claims big release due this fall as Microsoft herds us into the CLOUD
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Ubuntu 14.04 LTS: Great changes, but sssh don't mention the...
Why HELLO Amazon! You weren't here last time
Patch iOS, OS X now: PDFs, JPEGs, URLs, web pages can pwn your kit
Plus: iThings and desktops at risk of NEW SSL attack flaw
Next Windows obsolescence panic is 450 days from … NOW!
The clock is ticking louder for Windows Server 2003 R2 users
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
Red Hat to ship RHEL 7 release candidate with a taste of container tech
Grab 'near-final' version of next Enterprise Linux next week
Apple inaugurates free OS X beta program for world+dog
Prerelease software now open to anyone, not just developers – as long as you keep quiet
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.
Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
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.