Home Content News Linux vulnerability can be ‘easily exploited’: Qualys Research

Linux vulnerability can be ‘easily exploited’: Qualys Research

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The Qualys Research team has discovered a memory corruption vulnerability in polkit’s pkexec, a SUID-root program that is installed by default on every major Linux distribution. This easily exploited vulnerability allows any unprivileged user to gain full root privileges on a vulnerable host by exploiting this vulnerability in its default configuration.

Formerly known as PolicyKit, it is a component for controlling system-wide privileges in Unix-like operating systems. It provides an organised way for non-privileged processes to communicate with privileged processes. It is also possible to use polkit to execute commands with elevated privileges using the command pkexec followed by the command intended to be executed.

Successful exploitation of this vulnerability allows any unprivileged user to gain root privileges on the vulnerable host. Qualys security researchers have been able to independently verify the vulnerability, develop an exploit, and obtain full root privileges on default installations of Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, and CentOS. Other Linux distributions are likely vulnerable and probably exploitable.

With the vulnerability affecting both Linux and non-Linux OS, Qualys team said it recommends that users apply patches for this vulnerability immediately.

The Qualys Research Team has discovered a memory corruption vulnerability in polkit’s pkexec, a SUID-root program that is installed by default on every major Linux distribution. This easily exploited vulnerability allows any unprivileged user to gain full root privileges on a vulnerable host by exploiting this vulnerability in its default configuration.

 

 

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