WebSphere Arbitrary File Read Vulnerability (CVE-2019-4505) Threat Alert

WebSphere Arbitrary File Read Vulnerability (CVE-2019-4505) Threat Alert

October 14, 2019 | Adeline Zhang
  1. Vulnerability Description

On September 18, 2019, IBM officially released a security bulletin, disclosing an arbitrary file read vulnerability (CVE-2019-4505) in WebSphere (web service deployment middleware), which allows remote attackers to read sensitive files on the server via a crafted URL. This could result in attackers viewing any files in a certain directory, which may aid in further attacks.



  1. Scope of Impact

Affected Versions

  • WebSphere Application Server Version 9.0
  • WebSphere Application Server Version 8.5
  • WebSphere Application Server Version 8.0
  • WebSphere Application Server Version 7.0

Unaffected Versions

  • WebSphere Application Server Version or later (targeted availability 3Q2019)
  • WebSphere Application Server Version or later (targeted availability 1Q2020)
  1. Mitigation

    • Official Fix

Currently, IBM has released the latest fixes to patch this vulnerability. Affected users should apply these fixes as soon as possible to protect against this vulnerability. These fixes are available at the following link:


Upgrade rules for different affected versions are as follows:

WebSphere Application Server traditional and WebSphere Application Server Hypervisor Edition:

Upgrade V9.0.0.0 through to Fix Pack or later.

Upgrade V8.5.0.0 through to Fix Pack or later.

WebSphere Virtual Enterprise Edition:

Upgrade to the latest version.

Note: WebSphere Virtual Enterprise V7 and V8 are no longer in full support. IBM recommends upgrading to a fixed, supported version/release/platform of the product.


This advisory is only used to describe a potential risk. NSFOCUS does not provide any commitment or promise on this advisory. NSFOCUS and the author will not bear any liability for any direct and/or indirect consequences and losses caused by transmitting and/or using this advisory. NSFOCUS reserves all the rights to modify and interpret this advisory. Please include this statement paragraph when reproducing or transferring this advisory. Do not modify this advisory, add/delete any information to/from it, or use this advisory for commercial purposes without permission from NSFOCUS.


NSFOCUS, Inc., a global network and cyber security leader, protects enterprises and carriers from advanced cyber attacks. The company’s Intelligent Hybrid Security strategy utilizes both cloud and on-premises security platforms, built on a foundation of real-time global threat intelligence, to provide multi-layered, unified and dynamic protection against advanced cyber attacks.

NSFOCUS works with Fortune Global 500 companies, including four of the world’s five largest financial institutions, organizations in insurance, retail, healthcare, critical infrastructure industries as well as government agencies. NSFOCUS has technology and channel partners in more than 60 countries, is a member of both the Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP), and the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA).

A wholly owned subsidiary of NSFOCUS Information Technology Co. Ltd., the company has operations in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific.