Cisco patches vulnerabilities in some security appliances, switches and routers

If left unpatched, the vulnerabilities could enable denial-of-service, command execution or authentication bypass attacks

Cisco Systems has released security patches for authentication bypass, command execution and denial-of-service vulnerabilities affecting products that use its Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) software, as well as the Cisco Catalyst 6500 series switches and Cisco 7600 series routers.

Cisco released new versions of its ASA software to address six denial-of-service vulnerabilities in various components and three authentication bypass vulnerabilities in remote access services.

Attackers could cause a device to reload, resulting in denial of service, by exploiting flaws in the way the IPsec VPN service handles ICMP packets; in the SQL*Net inspection engine, and in code for HTTP deep packet inspection, DNS inspection, or clientless SSL VPN, Cisco said Wednesday in a security advisory.

In addition, they could gain access to the internal network or gain management access to the affected system via the Cisco Adaptive Security Device Management (ASDM) by exploiting flaws in the digital certificate or remote access VPN authentication procedures, the company said.

The affected Cisco ASA Software versions are used on the Cisco ASA 5500 Series Adaptive Security Appliances, Cisco ASA 5500-X Next Generation Firewall, Cisco ASA Services Module for Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series Switches and Cisco 7600 Series Routers, and Cisco ASA 1000V Cloud Firewall.

Not all versions are affected by all of the vulnerabilities. In order to determine which vulnerabilities affect the specific version used on their equipment and what version they should upgrade to, customers should consult a table included in the advisory.

The Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series switches, which are designed for use on backbone networks at campuses and large enterprise branches, and the carrier-class network edge Cisco 7600 Series routers, are also affected by two vulnerabilities in the Cisco Firewall Services Module (FWSM).

One of the vulnerabilities allows attackers to execute commands when the FWSM software is configured for multiple context mode. Successful exploitation of this vulnerability may result in a complete compromise of the confidentiality, integrity and availability of the affected system, Cisco said in a separate advisory published Wednesday.

The other FWSM vulnerability is the same SQL*Net Inspection Engine flaw that affects ASA and may result in a reload of an affected device, leading to a denial-of-service condition. Devices are only affected if SQL*Net inspection is enabled.

Workarounds are available for three of the ASA and FWSM denial-of-service vulnerabilities and are described in the corresponding advisories. In order to address the other issues, customers have to upgrade to the newly released software versions that correspond to their deployments.

According to Cisco, all vulnerabilities patched Wednesday were discovered while resolving customer support cases and the company's Product Security Incident Response Team is not aware of any incidents where these flaws have been publicly disclosed or exploited for malicious purposes.

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Tags securitymanagementpatch managementNetworkingLANvpnaccess controlnetworking hardwareCisco SystemspatchesAccess control and authenticationExploits / vulnerabilities

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Lucian Constantin

IDG News Service
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