June 3, 2014

Critical New Bug in Crypto Library Leaves Linux, Apps Open to Drive-by Attacks

A recently discovered bug in the GnuTLS cryptographic code library puts users of Linux and hundreds of other open source packages at risk of surreptitious malware attacks until they incorporate a fix developers quietly pushed out late last week.

Maliciously configured servers can exploit the bug by sending malformed data to devices as they establish encrypted HTTPS connections. Devices that rely on an unpatched version of GnuTLS can then be remotely hijacked by malicious code of the attacker's choosing, security researchers who examined the fix warned. The bug wasn't patched until Friday, with the release of GnuTLS versions 3.1.25, 3.2.15, and 3.3.4. While the patch has been available for three days, it will protect people only when the GnuTLS-dependent software they use has incorporated it. With literally hundreds of packages dependent on the library, that may take time.

Read more at ArsTechnica.

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