Visit our newest sister site!
Hundreds of free aircraft flight manuals
Civilian • Historical • Military • Declassified • FREE!


TUCoPS :: Cisco :: ciaci056.txt

Cisco Pix Private Link Key Vulnerability




-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----

             __________________________________________________________

                       The U.S. Department of Energy
                    Computer Incident Advisory Capability
                           ___  __ __    _     ___
                          /       |     /_\   /
                          \___  __|__  /   \  \___
             __________________________________________________________

                             INFORMATION BULLETIN

                    Cisco PIX Private Link Key Processing and
                           Cryptography Vulnerability

June 4, 1998 14:00 GMT                                            Number I-056
______________________________________________________________________________
PROBLEM:       Cisco has identified a vulnerability in the PIX Private Link
               that can be installed in Cisco PIX firewalls. An error in
               parsing of configuration file commands reduces the effective
               key length.
PLATFORM:      All PIX Private Link software through version 4.1.6.
DAMAGE:        Detailed knowledge of the key-parsing error will increase the
               attackers ability to crack the encryption by a factor of 256.
SOLUTION:      Upgrade to version 4.2.1, scheduled for release in late June
               1998.  There is no workaround available.
______________________________________________________________________________
VULNERABILITY  Cisco has had no reports of malicious exploitation of this
ASSESSMENT:    vulnerability. Cisco knows of no public announcement of this
               vulnerability before the date of this notice.
______________________________________________________________________________

[  Start Cisco Advisory  ]

Field Notice:
PIX Private Link Key Processing and Cryptography Issues
=======================================================

June 3, 1998

Summary
=======
PIX Private Link is an optional feature that can be installed in Cisco PIX
firewalls. PIX Private Link creates IP virtual private networks over
untrusted networks, such as the Internet, using tunnels encrypted with Data
Encryption Standard (DES) in ECB ("electronic codebook") mode.

An error in parsing of configuration file commands reduces the effective key
length for the PIX Private Link DES encryption to 48 bits from the nominal
56 bits.

Who Is Affected
===============
All users of the PIX Private Link encryption product with PIX software
versions earlier than the date of this notice are affected. This includes
all PIX Private Link software through version 4.1.6.

Impact
======
If attackers know the details of the key-parsing error in the PIX Private
Link software, they will know 8 bits of the key ahead of time. This reduces
the effective key length from the attacker's point of view from 56 to 48
bits. This reduction of the effective key length reduces the work involved
in a brute-force attack on the encryption by a factor of 256. That is,
knowledgeable attackers can, on the average, find the right key 256 times
faster than they would be able to find it with a true 56-bit key.

In addition to this key-length issue, some customers have expressed concern
over the use of DES ECB mode for PIX Private Link encryption. Although the
use of ECB mode is intentional, ECB is not generally considered to be the
best mode in which to employ DES, because it tends to simplify certain forms
of cryptanalysis and may permit certain replay attacks. Technical details of
the relative merits of various encryption modes are beyond the scope of this
document. Interested readers should refer to a cryptography text for more
information, such as Bruce Schneier's Applied Cryptography.

Details
=======
This vulnerability has been assigned Cisco bug ID CSCdk11848.

Affected Software Versions
- -------------------------
This vulnerability affects all released versions of PIX Private Link
software with version numbers up to and including 4.1.6, and all
beta/interim software released earlier than the date of this notice.

Planned Software Fixes
- ---------------------
The first regular release containing a fix for this problem will be version
4.2.1, which is tentatively scheduled for release in late June 1998. This
schedule is subject to change. Fixes for the 4.1 software release have not
yet been scheduled.

This fix extends the effective DES key length to a full 56 bits; ECB mode is
still used.

Customers who need to upgrade immediately may contact Cisco's Technical
Assistance Center (TAC) to obtain interim software. Interim software has not
been subjected to full testing; it has a greater chance of containing
serious bugs than would regular released software.

Interim releases are available only by special request from the Cisco TAC,
not via the regular download channels. Cisco advises customers to install
interim releases only if absolutely necessary. Customers who choose to
install interim releases should plan to upgrade to the regular released
software when it becomes available.

When the fix is installed, it will be necessary to upgrade both ends of each
Private Link tunnel at the same time. This is because key the modified key
parsing algorithm will lead old and new versions to derive different
encryption keys from the same configuration file.

Software upgrades to correct this key-length problem will be offered free of
charge to all PIX Private Link customers, regardless of their service
contract status. Customers under contract may obtain upgrades through their
usual procedures. Customers not under contract should call the Cisco TAC.
Contact information for the TAC is in the "Cisco Security Procedures"
section at the end of this message, and is available on Cisco's Worldwide
Web site at http://www.cisco.com/.

The use of ECB mode was a deliberate design decision for the PIX Private
Link product, and will not be changed. However, future IPSEC/IKE products
for the PIX platforms will use other encryption modes.

Workarounds
- ----------
There is no configuration workaround.

Exploitation and Public Announcements
=====================================
Cisco has had no reports of malicious exploitation of this vulnerability.

Cisco knows of no public announcements of this vulnerability before the date
of this notice. This vulnerability was discovered by an engineering analysis
conducted by a Cisco customer at a security incident response organization.

Status of This Notice
=====================
This is a final field notice. Although Cisco cannot guarantee the accuracy
of all statements in this notice, all the facts have been checked to the
best of our ability. Cisco does not anticipate issuing updated versions of
this notice unless there is some material change in the facts. Should there
be a significant change in the facts, Cisco may update this notice.

Distribution
- -----------
This notice will be posted on Cisco's Worldwide Web site at
http://www.cisco.com/warp/public/770/pixkey-pub.shtml. In addition to
Worldwide Web posting, the initial version of this notice is being sent to
the following e-mail and Usenet news recipients:

   * cust-security-announce@cisco.com
   * firewalls@lists.gnac.net
   * comp.security.firewalls
   * bugtraq@netspace.org
   * first-teams@first.org (includes CERT/CC)
   * Various internal Cisco mailing lists

Future updates of this notice, if any, will be placed on Cisco's Worldwide
Web server, but may or may not be actively announced on mailing lists or
newsgroups. Users concerned about this problem are encouraged to check the
URL given above for any updates.

Revision History
- ---------------
 Revision 1.0,        Initial released version
 08:00 AM
 US/Pacific,
 03-JUN-1998

Cisco Security Procedures
=========================
Please report security issues with Cisco products, and/or sensitive security
intrusion emergencies involving Cisco products, to security-alert@cisco.com.
Reports may be encrypted using PGP; public RSA and DSS keys for
"security-alert@cisco.com" are on the public PGP keyservers.

The alias "security-alert@cisco.com" is used only for reports incoming to
Cisco. Mail sent to the list goes only to a very small group of users within
Cisco. Neither outside users nor unauthorized Cisco employees may subscribe
to "security-alert@cisco.com".

Please do not use "security-alert@cisco.com" for configuration questions,
for security intrusions that you do not consider to be sensitive
emergencies, or for general, non-security-related support requests. We do
not have the capacity to handle such requests through this channel, and will
refer them to the TAC, delaying response to your questions. We advise
contacting the TAC directly with these requests. TAC contact numbers are as
follows:

   * +1 800 553 2447 (toll-free from within North America)
   * +1 408 526 7209 (toll call from anywhere in the world)
   * e-mail: tac@cisco.com

All formal public security notices generated by Cisco are sent to the public
mailing list "cust-security-announce@cisco.com". For information on
subscribing to this mailing list, send a message containing the single line
"info cust-security-announce" to "majordomo@cisco.com". An analogous list,
"cust-security-discuss@cisco.com" is available for public discussion of the
notices and of other Cisco security issues.


This notice is copyright 1998 by Cisco Systems, Inc. This notice may be
redistributed freely after the release date given at the top of the notice,
provided that redistributed copies are complete and unmodified, including
all date and version information.

[  End Cisco Advisory  ]

______________________________________________________________________________

CIAC wishes to acknowledge the contributions of Cisco Systems, Inc. for the
information contained in this bulletin.
______________________________________________________________________________


CIAC, the Computer Incident Advisory Capability, is the computer
security incident response team for the U.S. Department of Energy
(DOE) and the emergency backup response team for the National
Institutes of Health (NIH). CIAC is located at the Lawrence Livermore
National Laboratory in Livermore, California. CIAC is also a founding
member of FIRST, the Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams, a
global organization established to foster cooperation and coordination
among computer security teams worldwide.

CIAC services are available to DOE, DOE contractors, and the NIH. CIAC
can be contacted at:
    Voice:    +1 925-422-8193
    FAX:      +1 925-423-8002
    STU-III:  +1 925-423-2604
    E-mail:   ciac@llnl.gov

For emergencies and off-hour assistance, DOE, DOE contractor sites,
and the NIH may contact CIAC 24-hours a day. During off hours (5PM -
8AM PST), call the CIAC voice number 925-422-8193 and leave a message,
or call 800-759-7243 (800-SKY-PAGE) to send a Sky Page. CIAC has two
Sky Page PIN numbers, the primary PIN number, 8550070, is for the CIAC
duty person, and the secondary PIN number, 8550074 is for the CIAC
Project Leader.

Previous CIAC notices, anti-virus software, and other information are
available from the CIAC Computer Security Archive.

   World Wide Web:      http://www.ciac.org/
                        (or http://ciac.llnl.gov -- they're the same machine)
   Anonymous FTP:       ftp.ciac.org
                        (or ciac.llnl.gov -- they're the same machine)
   Modem access:        +1 (925) 423-4753 (28.8K baud)
                        +1 (925) 423-3331 (28.8K baud)

CIAC has several self-subscribing mailing lists for electronic
publications:
1. CIAC-BULLETIN for Advisories, highest priority - time critical
   information and Bulletins, important computer security information;
2. SPI-ANNOUNCE for official news about Security Profile Inspector
   (SPI) software updates, new features, distribution and
   availability;
3. SPI-NOTES, for discussion of problems and solutions regarding the
   use of SPI products.

Our mailing lists are managed by a public domain software package
called Majordomo, which ignores E-mail header subject lines. To
subscribe (add yourself) to one of our mailing lists, send the
following request as the E-mail message body, substituting
ciac-bulletin, spi-announce OR spi-notes for list-name:

E-mail to       ciac-listproc@llnl.gov or majordomo@tholia.llnl.gov:
        subscribe list-name
  e.g., subscribe ciac-bulletin

You will receive an acknowledgment email immediately with a confirmation
that you will need to mail back to the addresses above, as per the
instructions in the email.  This is a partial protection to make sure
you are really the one who asked to be signed up for the list in question.

If you include the word 'help' in the body of an email to the above address,
it will also send back an information file on how to subscribe/unsubscribe,
get past issues of CIAC bulletins via email, etc.

PLEASE NOTE: Many users outside of the DOE, ESnet, and NIH computing
communities receive CIAC bulletins.  If you are not part of these
communities, please contact your agency's response team to report
incidents. Your agency's team will coordinate with CIAC. The Forum of
Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST) is a world-wide
organization. A list of FIRST member organizations and their
constituencies can be obtained via WWW at http://www.first.org/.

This document was prepared as an account of work sponsored by an
agency of the United States Government. Neither the United States
Government nor the University of California nor any of their
employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any
legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or
usefulness of any information, apparatus, product, or process
disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately
owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial products,
process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or
otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement,
recommendation or favoring by the United States Government or the
University of California. The views and opinions of authors expressed
herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States
Government or the University of California, and shall not be used for
advertising or product endorsement purposes.

LAST 10 CIAC BULLETINS ISSUED (Previous bulletins available from CIAC)

I-045: SGI IRIX LicenseManager(1M) Vulnerabilities
I-046: Open Group xterm and Xaw Library Vulnerabilities
I-047: HP-UX OpenMail Vulnerability
I-048: SunOS mountd Vulnerability
I-049: SunOS ufsrestore Vulnerability
I-050: Digital UNIX softlinks - advfs Vulnerability
I-051: FreeBSD T/TCP Vulnerability
I-052: 3Com(r) CoreBuilder and SuperStack II LAN Vulnerabilities
I-053: ISC DHCP Distribution Vulnerability
I-054: Cisco Web Cache Control Protocol Router Vulnerability
I-055: SGI IRIX Vulnerabilities (NetWare Client, diskperf/diskalign



-----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
Version: 4.0 Business Edition

iQCVAwUBNXbNdbnzJzdsy3QZAQH1jAP/UuQ6E20eSoHAG6y27bWkzFBATNMBe7HE
ejjKDHJok1a74KbGOheRK3AaCTLfc5ghRIGE0Bh0HsyxLRGwONlOUq5YebbByM0O
0bDvdRp1fnQtD9k95lJYg0GZ9Jy2cdANaXFv3ORFrVzaeldl6RkL8Yf7am+ojbad
mjh6LOiIez8=
=NMMg
-----END PGP SIGNATURE-----


TUCoPS is optimized to look best in Firefox® on a widescreen monitor (1440x900 or better).
Site design & layout copyright © 1986-2014 AOH