This week's Bug Briefs: Cisco fixes MARS flaw

Also in this week's Bug Briefs: Microsoft re-releases a patch, the Month of Apple Bugs exposes more Mac OS X flaws and Oracle fixes 51 flaws in its quarterly CPU.

Cisco fixes MARS flaw
Networking giant Cisco Systems has fixed a security flaw in its popular Monitoring, Analysis and Response System (MARS) and Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM). Attackers could exploit the flaw to bypass security restrictions and do other damage.

The problem, Danish vulnerability clearinghouse Secunia said in an advisory, is that the SSL/TLS certificates and SSH public keys presented by devices are not being validated. "This can be exploited to conduct spoofing attacks and possibly gain knowledge of sensitive information," Secunia said.

The problem affects MARS versions prior to 4.2.3 and ASDM versions prior to 5.2(2.54). The solution is to upgrade to MARS version 4.2.3.

Microsoft re-releases MS07-002
Microsoft re-released its MS07-002 security update after the originally-released fix introduced some new flaws.

MS07-002 was released Jan. 9 to fix five separate security flaws in Microsoft Excel, most of which are exploitable when the spreadsheet program parses certain files and processes malformed IMDATA, column and palette records. One of the flaws wasn't specified.

The software giant said in an emailed statement that a targeted re-release became necessary to fix a glitch in how Excel 2000 processes the phonetic information in Excel files created in the Korean, Chinese or Japanese executable mode.

"After you install [the patch], you can no longer open some files that you created by using any version of Excel," Microsoft said.

A Microsoft spokesman stressed that the re-released patch only affects customers running Excel 2000 and said the original version of MS07-002 "does protect against all vulnerabilities discussed in the bulletin. Customers who are not running Excel 2000 do not need to take action."

More Mac OS X flaws disclosed
The Month of Apple Bugs project continues to disclose flaws in Apple's Mac OS X operating system. One of the latest is a flaw attackers could exploit in the operating system to cause a denial of service or run malicious commands. The problem is a buffer overflow error in the service location protocol daemon (slpd) that surfaces when the program handles registration requests with an overly long "attr-list" field. To mitigate the threat, the French Security Incident Response Team (FrSIRT) recommended in an advisory that users disable personal file sharing.

Oracle fixes 51 flaws
Oracle Corp. fixed 51 security flaws Tuesday with the release of its January Critical Patch Update (CPU). Attackers could exploit many of the flaws to compromise vulnerable systems from remote locations without a username or password.

The CPU includes 17 fixes for Oracle Database, one of which an attacker could remotely exploit without the need for a username and password. Nine flaws are addressed in Oracle HTTP Server, eight of which are remotely exploitable. Twelve fixes address flaws in Oracle Application Server, eight of which attackers could remotely exploit without a username or password.

The database giant released seven fixes for flaws in Oracle E-Business Suite, including one in the Oracle Workflow Cartridge. "None of these vulnerabilities may be remotely exploited without authentication," Oracle said in the CPU bulletin. The company also addressed flaws in Oracle PeopleSoft Enterprise PeopleTools and Oracle Enterprise Manager.

Read more on IT risk management