Researchers find critical vulnerabilities in Java 7 Update 11

The latest Java update is also vulnerable to sandbox bypass exploits, researchers from Security Explorations say

Researchers from Security Explorations, a Poland-based vulnerability research firm, claim to have found two new vulnerabilities in Java 7 Update 11 that can be exploited to bypass the software's security sandbox and execute arbitrary code on computers.

Oracle released Java 7 Update 11 last Sunday as an emergency security update in order to block a zero-day exploit used by cybercriminals to infect computers with malware.

Security Explorations successfully confirmed that a complete Java security sandbox bypass can be still be achieved under Java 7 Update 11 (JRE version 1.7.0_11-b21) by exploiting two new vulnerabilities discovered by the company's researchers, Adam Gowdiak, the company's founder, said Friday in a message sent to the Full Disclosure mailing list. The vulnerabilities were reported to Oracle on Friday, together with working proof-of-concept exploit code, he said.

According to Security Explorations' disclosure policy, technical details about the vulnerabilities will not be publicly disclosed until the vendor issues a patch.

Researchers from security firm Immunity who analyzed the exploit being used by cybercriminals since last week concluded that it also combined two vulnerabilities to achieve a Java sandbox escape. However, they later said in a blog post that Java 7 Update 11 only addressed one of them and warned that if attackers find another vulnerability to replace the patched one, a new exploit can be created.

The vulnerabilities discovered by Security Explorations are separate from the one left unpatched by Oracle in Java 7 Update 11, Gowdiak said Friday via email.

Some security researchers, including those from the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT), continued to advise users to disable the Java browser plug-in despite the release of Java 7 Update 11, citing concerns that similar attacks might occur in the future.

"There is definitely something worrying regarding the quality of Java SE 7 code," Gowdiak said. This could suggest the lack of a proper Secure Development Lifecycle program for Java or some other problems that are internal to Oracle, he said.

That said, the fact that Java 7 Update 11 asks for users confirmation before allowing Java applets to be executed inside browsers is definitely a step in the right direction and could block many attacks, Gowdiak said.

Tags Immunityonline safetySecurity ExplorationssecurityExploits / vulnerabilitiesOracle

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Lucian Constantin

IDG News Service

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?