Feeds

Researchers bypass Internet Explorer Protected Mode

Just add exploit

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Researchers say they have devised a way to carry out stealthy drive-by exploits even when victims are using recent versions of Internet Explorer with a feature known as Protected Mode.

The attack, described in a paper released by Verizon Business, requires the attacker to have an exploit for a vulnerability that's not currently patched. It works only against machines that have the Local Intranet Zone enabled, as is the default for domain-joined workstations.

Protected Mode, which was introduced in version 7 of IE, is intended to prevent exploit code from accessing sensitive parts of the Windows operating system, such as those that create files or change registry settings. But the Verizon Business researchers said they figured out a reliable way to bypass the measure that requires no interaction on the part of the victim.

“The attack combines the facts that sockets are not subject to Mandatory Integrity Control and that sites in the Local Intranet Zone are rendered with Protected Mode disabled,” the paper states.

“The new malicious web page will be rendered in the Local Intranet Zone and the rendering process will now be executing at medium integrity. By exploiting the same vulnerability a second time, arbitrary code execution can now be achieved as the same user at medium integrity. This provides full access to the user’s account and allows malware to be persisted on the client, something which was not possible from low integrity whilst in Protected Mode.”

A PDF of the paper is here. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
Chinese hackers spied on investigators of Flight MH370 - report
Classified data on flight's disappearance pinched
KER-CHING! CryptoWall ransomware scam rakes in $1 MEEELLION
Anatomy of the net's most destructive ransomware threat
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.