Feeds

Vulnerability leaves Cisco small biz routers wide open to attack

Exploit code available, but no patch until end of the month

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

A number of Cisco networking products for small businesses contain critical vulnerabilities that could allow attackers to gain root access to the equipment, the networking giant has warned.

The affected products include the WAP4410N Wireless-N Access Point, the WRVS4400N Wireless-N Gigabit Security Router, and the RVS4000 4-port Gigabit Security Router, Cisco said in a security advisory issued late on Friday.

Note that these products are all branded Cisco and not Linksys. Cisco marketed consumer and small business networking equipment under the Linksys brand for ten years beginning in 2003, but sold the division to Belkin in January 2013.

According to Cisco's advisory, the vulnerabilities in all three products stem from an undocumented test interface that listens on TCP port 32764 on the affected devices.

Attackers can potentially exploit that interface to execute arbitrary commands on the underlying operating system, the advisory explains. By doing so, Cisco adds, they can potentially gain the administrator password to the device, which would then allow them to execute commands with elevated privileges.

The most obvious use for such an exploit would be to trigger a denial-of-service attack on a network by freezing up the router or resetting it to its factory default configuration.

Cisco has ranked the vulnerabilities at 10.0 on the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) – the highest possible score, which indicates a critical flaw.

Worst of all, public exploit code for the vulnerabilities is already available, although Cisco says it has not seen any widespread attacks based on the exploit so far.

There are no known workarounds for the vulnerabilities and Cisco has not released any patches as yet, although it promises it will ship fixes for all three routers by the end of January 2014. Until then, El Reg advises users of the affected products to cross their fingers. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
Ello? ello? ello?: Facebook challenger in DDoS KNOCKOUT
Gets back up again after half an hour though
SHELLSHOCKED: Fortune 1000 outfits Bash out batches of patches
CloudPassage points to 'pervasive' threat of Bash bug
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.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.