On June 5, Beijing time, IBM released a security advisory to announce the fix of a remote code execution vulnerability (CVE-2020-4450) in WebSphere Application Server (WAS). This vulnerability is caused by deserialization of the IIOP protocol. An unauthenticated attacker could target the WAS server remotely via the IIOP protocol, causing arbitrary code execution on the target server to gain system privileges to take control of the server. This vulnerability is assigned the CVSS score of 9.8 and therefore is a high-risk one.
WebSphere Application Server is an enterprise-ready web middleware that is widely used in enterprises’ web services, thanks to its reliability, flexibility, and robustness. As this vulnerability has an extensive impact, affected users should take preventive measures as soon as possible.
Scope of Impact
- WebSphere Application Server 220.127.116.11 – 18.104.22.168
- WebSphere Application Server 22.214.171.124 – 126.96.36.199
- WebSphere Application Server 188.8.131.52 – 184.108.40.206
- WebSphere Application Server 220.127.116.11 – 18.104.22.168
Note: Official support is no longer available for WebSphere Application Server V7.0 and V8.0.
- Version Check
Users can check whether their applications are vulnerable by checking the current version.
Method 1: Log in to the WebSphere Application Server and check the version information on the homepage.
If it is one of the affected versions, the application is vulnerable.
Method 2: Access /opt/IBM/WebSphere/AppServer/bin and execute ./versionInfo.sh to check the current version and the package build date. If the date is earlier than June 3, 2020, this application is vulnerable.
- Official Fix
Currently, the vendor has released a new version to fix this vulnerability and provided security patches to versions for which official support is unavailable. Affected users are advised to upgrade the application as soon as possible.
Alternatively, users can upgrade their application by applying the patch as prompted by IBM Installation Manager.
Users can manually download patches from the official website and apply them:
|Affected Version||Remediation Method||Patch Download Link|
|22.214.171.124 – 126.96.36.199||Apply the patch PH25074.||https://www.ibm.com/support/pages/node/6220276|
|188.8.131.52 – 184.108.40.206||Apply the patch PH25074.|
|220.127.116.11 – 18.104.22.168||Upgrade to 22.214.171.124 and apply the patch PH25074.|
|126.96.36.199 – 188.8.131.52||Upgrade to 184.108.40.206 and apply the patch PH25074.|
Note: Shut down the WebSphere server before patch installation and start the service after the installation.
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