It’s the second Tuesday of the month, which means the latest security updates from Adobe and Microsoft are released. Take a break from your regularly scheduled activities and join us as we review the details for their latest security offerings.
Adobe Patches for May 2021
For May, Adobe released 12 patches addressing 44 CVEs in Experience Manager, InDesign, Illustrator, InCopy, Adobe Genuine Service, Acrobat and Reader, Magento, Creative Cloud Desktop, Media Encoder, After Effects, Medium, and Animate. A total of five of these bugs came through the ZDI program.
The update for Acrobat and Reader should be given the highest priority. One of the 14 CVEs fixed by this patch is listed as being currently used in the wild. The bug (CVE-2021-28550) is one of three use after free (UAF) bugs addressed by this patch. These and other vulnerabilities could lead to code execution if someone were to open a specially crafted PDF with an affected version of Acrobat or Reader. The update for InDesign also stands out. These bugs result from the lack of proper validation of user-supplied data, which can result in a write past the end of an allocated structure. An attacker can leverage this vulnerability to execute code in the context of the current process.
Beyond the one Reader bug, none of the other vulnerabilities patched by Adobe this month are listed as publicly known or under active attack at the time of release.
Microsoft Patches for May 2021
For May, Microsoft released patches for 55 CVEs in Microsoft Windows, .NET Core and Visual Studio, Internet Explorer (IE), Microsoft Office, SharePoint Server, Open-Source Software, Hyper-V, Skype for Business and Microsoft Lync, and Exchange Server. A total of 13 of these bugs came through the ZDI program. Of these 55 bugs, four are rated as Critical, 50 are rated as Important, and one is listed as Moderate in severity. According to Microsoft, three of these bugs are publicly known but none are listed as under active exploit at the time of release.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the more interesting updates for this month, starting with a bug sure to garner a lot of attention:
- CVE-2021-31166 - HTTP Protocol Stack Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
This patch corrects a bug that could allow an unauthenticated attacker to remotely execute code as kernel. An attacker would simply need to send a specially crafted packet to an affected server. That makes this bug wormable, with even Microsoft calling that out in their write-up. Before you pass this aside, Windows 10 can also be configured as a web server, so it is impacted as well. Definitely put this on the top of your test-and-deploy list.
- CVE-2021-28476 - Hyper-V Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
With a CVSS of 9.9, this bug scores the highest severity rating for this month’s release. However, Microsoft notes an attacker is more likely to abuse this vulnerability for a denial of service in the form of a bugcheck rather than code execution. Because of this, it could be argued that the attack complexity would be high, which changes the CVSS rating to 8.5. That still rates as high severity, but not critical. Still, the bugcheck alone is worth making sure your Hyper-V systems get this update.
- CVE-2021-27068 - Visual Studio Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
This patch fixes an unusual bug in Visual Studio 2019 that could allow code execution. It’s unusual because it’s listed as not requiring any user interaction, so it’s unclear how an attacker would leverage this vulnerability. It does appear that the attacker would need to be authenticated at some level, but the attack complexity is listed as low. If you are a developer running Visual Studio, make sure you grab this update.
- CVE-2020-24587 - Windows Wireless Networking Information Disclosure Vulnerability
We don’t normally highlight info disclosure bugs, but this one has the potential to be pretty damaging. This patch fixes a vulnerability that could allow an attacker to disclose the contents of encrypted wireless packets on an affected system. It’s not clear what the range on such an attack would be, but you should assume some proximity is needed. You’ll also note this CVE is from 2020, which could indicate Microsoft has been working on this fix for some time.
Here’s the full list of CVEs released by Microsoft for May 2021:
|CVE-2021-31204||.NET Core and Visual Studio Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.3||Yes||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31200||Common Utilities Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.2||Yes||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31207||Microsoft Exchange Server Security Feature Bypass Vulnerability||Moderate||6.6||Yes||No||SFB|
|CVE-2021-31166||HTTP Protocol Stack Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Critical||9.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-28476||Hyper-V Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Critical||9.9||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31194||OLE Automation Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Critical||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-26419||Scripting Engine Memory Corruption Vulnerability||Critical||6.4||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-28461||Dynamics Finance and Operations Cross-site Scripting Vulnerability||Important||6.1||No||No||XSS|
|CVE-2021-31936||Microsoft Accessibility Insights for Web Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||7.4||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31182||Microsoft Bluetooth Driver Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||7.1||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2021-31174||Microsoft Excel Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||5.5||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31195||Microsoft Exchange Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||6.5||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31198||Microsoft Exchange Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31209||Microsoft Exchange Server Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||6.5||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2021-28455||Microsoft Jet Red Database Engine and Access Connectivity Engine Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||8.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31180||Microsoft Office Graphics Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31178||Microsoft Office Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||5.5||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31175||Microsoft Office Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31176||Microsoft Office Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31177||Microsoft Office Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31179||Microsoft Office Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31171||Microsoft SharePoint Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||4.1||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31181||Microsoft SharePoint Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||8.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31173||Microsoft SharePoint Server Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||5.3||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-28474||Microsoft SharePoint Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||8.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-26418||Microsoft SharePoint Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||4.6||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2021-28478||Microsoft SharePoint Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||7.6||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2021-31172||Microsoft SharePoint Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||7.1||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2021-31184||Microsoft Windows Infrared Data Association (IrDA) Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||5.5||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-26422||Skype for Business and Lync Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.2||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-26421||Skype for Business and Lync Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||6.5||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2021-31214||Visual Studio Code Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31211||Visual Studio Code Remote Development Extension Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31213||Visual Studio Code Remote Development Extension Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-27068||Visual Studio Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||8.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-28465||Web Media Extensions Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31190||Windows Container Isolation FS Filter Driver Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31165||Windows Container Manager Service Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31167||Windows Container Manager Service Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31168||Windows Container Manager Service Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31169||Windows Container Manager Service Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31208||Windows Container Manager Service Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-28479||Windows CSC Service Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||5.5||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31185||Windows Desktop Bridge Denial of Service Vulnerability||Important||5.5||No||No||DoS|
|CVE-2021-31170||Windows Graphics Component Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31188||Windows Graphics Component Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31192||Windows Media Foundation Core Remote Code Execution Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||RCE|
|CVE-2021-31191||Windows Projected File System FS Filter Driver Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||5.5||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31186||Windows Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||7.4||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2021-31205||Windows SMB Client Security Feature Bypass Vulnerability||Important||4.3||No||No||SFB|
|CVE-2021-31193||Windows SSDP Service Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2021-31187||Windows WalletService Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability||Important||7.8||No||No||EoP|
|CVE-2020-24587||Windows Wireless Networking Information Disclosure Vulnerability||Important||6.5||No||No||Info|
|CVE-2020-24588||Windows Wireless Networking Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||6.5||No||No||Spoofing|
|CVE-2020-26144||Windows Wireless Networking Spoofing Vulnerability||Important||6.5||No||No||Spoofing|
There’s a flurry of Exchange patches in this month’s release, and some are related to bugs disclosed during the recent Pwn2Own contest. Two of the patches correct remote code execution bugs. While it appears these bugs result from Pwn2Own submissions, the exploits used during the contest did not require user interaction. The write-up from Microsoft does list user interaction in the CVSS score, however they may be scoring just this piece of the exploit chain. There’s also a spoofing bug and a security feature bypass that were used at the contest as part of a multi-bug chain. More Exchange patches are expected as not everything disclosed at the contest has been addressed. We’re working with Microsoft to get further clarification.
Moving on to the two remaining Critical-rated patches, both involve browsing to a website to get code execution. One bug impacts Internet Explorer while the other occurs when an attacker invokes OLE automation through a web browser. In both cases, the attacker would somehow have to lure the victim to their website.
Looking at the Important-rated patches, 18 involve remote code execution (RCE) of some form. One of the publicly known bugs falls into this category, although the disclosure occurred several months ago. The common utilities (common_utils.py) had an update checked in to GitHub back in December. If you use the Neural Network Intelligence open-source toolkit, make sure you have the latest version. There are several open-and-own style bugs in various Office components. There are three code execution bugs in Visual Studio Code, but these require a user to open a malicious file in a directory. If an attacker can convince such an act, they can execute their code at the level of the logged-on user.
Another RCE was reported by ZDI researcher Hossein Lotfi and impacts the Jet Red Database Engine and Access Connectivity Engine. To completely address this vulnerability, you’ll want to apply the update and restrict access to remote databases. Failing to restrict access can still expose your database to potential SQL adhoc/injection flaws. Microsoft published KB5002984 to provide guidance on restricting access.
There are 11 elevation of privilege (EoP) bugs receiving patches this month, and most are in the Windows Container Manager Service. Another EoP fix for .NET Core and Visual Studio is listed as publicly known, but Microsoft does not say where the disclosure occurred. One bug reported through the ZDI program affects the Wallet Service. By creating a directory junction, an attacker can abuse the service to create a file in an arbitrary location. An attacker can leverage this vulnerability to escalate privileges and execute code in the context of SYSTEM. Two other EoP bugs in the Windows Graphics component were reported by ZDI researcher Lucas Leong. The vulnerability result from the handling of Palette and Font Entry objects.
This month’s release includes 10 patches for information disclosure bugs, including the one previously mentioned. For the most part, these only lead to leaks consisting of unspecified memory contents. There are some notable exceptions. The info disclosure bugs in SharePoint could lead to unauthorized file system access or exposing Personally Identifiable Information (PII). Again, the info disclosure bug in Wireless is the most severe of this bunch.
There are eight spoofing bugs in May, and two were reported by the same researcher who reported the Wireless info disclosure bug. These also impact the Wireless component, but it’s not clear how the spoofing occurs. These also have CVEs from 2020, so again, it’s an indicator that these bugs have been in the works for a while. Other spoofing bugs being fixed this month affect SharePoint Server, Bluetooth, and Skype for Business and Lync.
In addition to the previously mentioned Exchange security feature bypass, there’s a fix for a bypass in the SMB client. In SMBv2, guest fallback is not disabled by default. The patch disables guest fallback access to enforce the OS and Group Policy settings. You can also disable guest access via the registry. The May release is rounded out with a cross-site scripting (XSS) bug in Dynamics Finance and Operations and a DoS bug in Windows Desktop Bridge.
Finally, the servicing stack advisory (ADV990001) was revised for all versions of Windows. No new advisories were released this month.
The next Patch Tuesday falls on June 8, and we’ll return with details and patch analysis then. Until then, stay safe, happy patching, and may all your reboots be smooth and clean!
The May 2021 Security Update Review