Feeds

Nasty IE 0day exploit hosted on Amnesty International site

'Protecting human rights worldwide'

High performance access to file storage

Visitors to Amnesty International's Hong Kong website are being bombarded with a host of lethal exploits, including one that attacks an unpatched vulnerability in Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser, researchers at security firm Websense said.

The injected IE attack code resides directly on the pages of amnesty.org.hk, an indication that the perpetrators were able to penetrate deep into the website's security defenses. The code exploits a vulnerability disclosed last week that gives attackers complete control over machines running default versions of IE 6 and 7. Version 8 isn't vulnerable, thanks to security protections built into the browser.

It's the second report in a week that the previously unknown vulnerability is being actively exploited to install malware on IE users' machines. Last week, antivirus firm Symantec warned that an undisclosed website had been compromised so that it was laced with code that targeted the flaw.

The attackers then sent emails that lured a select group of people in targeted organizations to the booby-trapped page, causing those who used IE versions 6 and 7 to be infected with a backdoor trojan.

The underlying security bug resides in a part of IE that handles CSS, or Cascading Style Sheet, tags. As a result, the browser under-allocates memory, allowing data to be overwritten in memory vtable pointers. By spraying memory with special data, an attacker can cause IE to execute code.

A security protection known as DEP, short for data execution prevention, prevents the attack from working. DEP is turned on by default in IE 8. Microsoft has advised those who must use IE 6 and 7 to use a security tool known as EMET to add DEP to those earlier versions.

Not that Microsoft or Amnesty International should be singled out. Last month, a zero-day vulnerability in Mozilla Firefox was exploited on the Nobel Peace Prize website.

The Amnesty International website is serving a variety of other exploits that attack previously patched vulnerabilities in Apple's QuickTime media player, and Adobe's Flash and Shockwave players. The Websense report is here. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
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
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
NSA denies it knew about and USED Heartbleed encryption flaw for TWO YEARS
Agency forgets it exists to protect communications, not just spy on them
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.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.