Cisco Secure Desktop Privilege Escalation Vulnerability
iDefense Security Advisory 11.08.06
Nov 08, 2006
Cisco Secure Desktop allows secure VPN connections from remote PCs and
offers functionality to ensure PCs meet administrator approved security
policies as well as having features that securely wipe downloaded data
after disconnect. More information is available on the vendors site at:
Local exploitation of an insecure permissions vulnerability in Cisco
Systems Secure Desktop product could allow privilege escalation attacks
to be conducted by local users.
When Cisco Secure Desktop Web VPN product is installed on a NTFS formatted
drive, permissions are set on all files to grant full control to all users.
Certain files run as a system service and can be easily replaced.
Exploiting this vulnerability allows unprivileged local users to gain
system-level permissions to their local PCs. Exploitation is trivial and no
exploit code is required. Binaries for locally running services can be
renamed while they are running, making exploitation straight forward.
iDefense has confirmed this vulnerability exists on Cisco Secure Desktop
version 126.96.36.199. Previous versions are suspected to be vulnerable.
Correcting the file permissions of the Secure Desktop installation
directory would prevent exploitation.
VI. VENDOR RESPONSE
Cisco has addressed this vulnerability within version 188.8.131.52 of the Cisco
Secure Desktop Software. More information can be obtained from Cisco's
VII. CVE INFORMATION
A Mitre Corp. Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) number has not
been assigned yet.
VIII. DISCLOSURE TIMELINE
10/04/2006 Initial vendor notification
10/06/2006 Initial vendor response
11/08/2006 Coordinated public disclosure
This vulnerability was reported to iDefense by Titon of Bastard Labs.
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X. LEGAL NOTICES
Copyright =A9 2006 iDefense, Inc.
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the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use of
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