Feeds

CERT warns of critical industrial control bug

Iconics SCADA software open to code execution attacks

Security for virtualized datacentres

A group collaborating with the US Computer Emergency Readiness Team is warning oil refineries, power plants, and other industrial facilities of a bug in a popular piece of software that could allow attackers to take control of their computer systems.

The vulnerability in the Genesis32 and BizViz products made by Massachusetts-based Iconics could allow attackers to remotely execute malicious code on machines that run these SCADA, or supervisory control and data acquisition, programs, the Industrial Control Systems CERT warned (PDF) on Wednesday. The programs are used to control equipment used in factories, water, wastewater and electric utilities, and oil and gas refineries.

The vulnerability stems from a stack-overflow bug found in an ActiveX control used by the SCADA programs and can be exploited to gain command-execution capability, researchers from Australasia-based Security-Assessment.com warned (PDF).

“By passing a specially crafted string to the 'SetActiveXGUID' method, it is possible to overflow a static buffer and execute arbitrary code on the user's machine with the privileges of the logged on user,” the researchers warned. They included a proof-of-concept exploit written in JavaScript.

Iconics has updated the vulnerable component to plug the security hole. According to the advisory, version 9.22 of Genesis32 and BizViz isn't susceptible to the attack.

US CERT recommends that users of SCADA software take basic precautions to protect themselves from security breaches. The measures include isolating critical devices from the internet and locating networks and remote devices behind firewalls.

Research from last year that suggested state-sponsored hackers attempted to disrupt Iran's nuclear-enrichment efforts by exploiting SCADA vulnerabilities has brought new urgency to security in industrial settings. ®

This story was updated to clarify the CERT group that issued the report.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
NASTY SSL 3.0 vuln to be revealed soon – sources (Update: It's POODLE)
So nasty no one's even whispering until patch is out
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Forget passwords, let's use SELFIES, says Obama's cyber tsar
Michael Daniel wants to kill passwords dead
FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones
Claims it's what the Founding Fathers would have wanted – catching killers and pedos
Kill off SSL 3.0 NOW: HTTPS savaged by vicious POODLE
Pull it out ASAP, it is SWISS CHEESE
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
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?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.