Microsoft Windows PowerShell Arbitrary Code Execution Vulnerability [CVE-2018-8256]

CVE Number – CVE-2018-8256

A vulnerability in the PowerShell component of Microsoft Windows could allow an authenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on a targeted system.

The vulnerability exists because the affected software improperly handles crafted files. An attacker could exploit the vulnerability by sending a file that is designed to submit malicious input to the system. A successful exploit could allow the attacker to execute arbitrary code on the system.

Microsoft confirmed the vulnerability and released software updates.

Analysis

  • To exploit this vulnerability, the attacker must send a malicious request to the targeted system, making exploitation more difficult in environments that restrict network access from untrusted sources.

    Microsoft addressed this vulnerability by correcting how the affected software processes crafted files.

Safeguards

  • Administrators are advised to apply the appropriate updates.

    Administrators are advised to allow only trusted users to have network access.

    Administrators are advised to run both firewall and antivirus applications to minimize the potential of inbound and outbound threats.

    Administrators may consider using IP-based access control lists (ACLs) to allow only trusted systems to access the affected systems.

    Administrators can help protect affected systems from external attacks by using a solid firewall strategy.

    Administrators may consider using the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) scan tool to identify common security misconfigurations and missing security updates on system endpoints.

    Administrators are advised to monitor affected systems.

Vendor Announcements

Fixed Software

  • Microsoft customers can obtain updates directly by using the links in the Microsoft Security Update Guide. These updates are also distributed by Windows automatic update features and are available from the Microsoft Update Catalog. Microsoft Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), Systems Management Server, and System Center Configuration Manager can assist administrators in deploying software updates.

Duncan is a technology professional with over 20 years experience of working in various IT roles. He also has a wide range of other skills in radio, electronics and telecommunications.

Duncan Newell

Duncan is a technology professional with over 20 years experience of working in various IT roles. He also has a wide range of other skills in radio, electronics and telecommunications.

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