Threat Signal Report

CISA Warns VMware Vulnerabilities Exploited in the Wild Leading to Full System Compromise

description-logo Description

FortiGuard Labs is aware that the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) CISA released an advisory on recently patched VMware vulnerabilities (CVE-2022-22954 and CVE-2022-22960) being exploited separately and in combination, allowing threat actors to gain full control of the compromised system. Both vulnerabilities affect VMware Workspace ONE Access, Identity Manager, and vRealize Automation and were patched on April 6th, 2022. The advisory also states that CISA expects threat actors to develop exploits for newly patched VMware vulnerabilities (CVE-2022-22972 and CVE-2022-22973) quickly.


Why is this Significant?

This is significant because the advisory that CISA released on CVE-2022-22954 and CVE-2022-22960 was prompted by an actual incident which one large organization was compromised by an unidentified threat actor on or around April 12, 2022. According to the advisory, the threat actor "leveraged CVE-2022-22954 to execute an arbitrary shell command as a VMware user. The actor then exploited CVE-2022-22960 to escalate the user's privileges to root. With root access, the actor could wipe logs, escalate permissions, and move laterally to other systems". The advisory also warns that exploits for another VMware vulnerabilities (CVE-2022-22972 and CVE-2022-22973) will be developed soon. As such, the patches for the four vulnerabilities or workarounds should be applied as soon as possible.


What is CVE-2022-22954, CVE-2022-22960, CVE-2022-22972 and CVE-2022-22973?

CVE-2022-22954 is a vulnerability in VMware Workspace ONE Access, Identity Manager, and vRealize Automation, which an attacker with network access can trigger a server-side template injection that may result in remote code execution. The vulnerability has the CVSSv3 base score of 9.8 and is rated critical.


FortiGuard Labs previously released Threat Signal on CVE-2022-22954. See Appendix for a link to "Newly Patched VMware Vulnerability (CVE-2022-22954) Being Exploited in the Wild".


CVE-2022-22960 is a Local Privilege Escalation (LPE) vulnerability in VMware Workspace ONE Access, Identity Manager, and vRealize Automation. As LPE, attacker is required to have local access can escalate privileges to 'root'. The vulnerability has the CVSSv3 base score of 7.8 and is rated important.


CVE-2022-22972 is an authentication bypass vulnerability that affects VMware Workspace ONE Access, Identity Manager and vRealize Automation. As LPE, exploitation happens locally as such an attacker is required to have access to the victim's machine to elevate privileges. The vulnerability has the CVSSv3 base score of 9.8 and is rated critical.


CVE-2022-22973 is a Local Privilege Escalation (LPE) vulnerability that affects VMware Workspace ONE Access, Identity Manager and vRealize Automation. As LPE, attacker is required to have local access can escalate privileges to 'root'. The vulnerability has the CVSSv3 base score of 7.8 and is rated important.


Has the Vendor Released Advisories?

Yes, VMware released advisories for all four vulnerabilities. See the Appendix for links to "VMSA-2022-0011.1" and "VMSA-2022-0014".


Has the Vendor Released Patches for the Vulnerabilities?

VMware released patches for CVE-2022-22954 and CVE-2022-22960 on April 6th, 2022. Patches for CVE-2022-22972 and CVE-2022-22973 were released on May 18th, 2022.


What is the Status of Coverage?

FortiGuard Labs has released the following IPS signature for CVE-2022-22954:


VMware.Workspace.ONE.Access.Catalog.Remote.Code.Execution


A network IOC for CVE-2022-22954 called out in the CISA advisory is blocked by the WebFiltering client.


CVE-2022-22960, CVE-2022-22972, CVE-2022-22973 were privately disclosed as such there currently is no available Proof-of-Concept code. FortiGuard Labs is monitoring the situation closely and will update this Threat Signal when protection becomes available.


Any Suggested Mitigation?

VMware has provided mitigations for CVE-2022-22954, CVE-2022-22960, CVE-2022-22972. See the Appendix for links to "KB88098" for CVE-2022-22954 and CVE-2022-22960, and "KB88433" for CVE-2022-22972.


Definitions

Traffic Light Protocol

Color When Should it Be used? How may it be shared?

TLP: RED

Not for disclosure, restricted to participants only.
Sources may use TLP:RED when information cannot be effectively acted upon by additional parties, and could lead to impacts on a party's privacy, reputation, or operations if misused. Recipients may not share TLP:RED information with any parties outside of the specific exchange, meeting, or conversation in which it was originally disclosed. In the context of a meeting, for example, TLP:RED information is limited to those present at the meeting. In most circumstances, TLP:RED should be exchanged verbally or in person.

TLP: AMBER

Limited disclosure, restricted to participants’ organizations.
Sources may use TLP:AMBER when information requires support to be effectively acted upon, yet carries risks to privacy, reputation, or operations if shared outside of the organizations involved. Recipients may only share TLP:AMBER information with members of their own organization, and with clients or customers who need to know the information to protect themselves or prevent further harm. Sources are at liberty to specify additional intended limits of the sharing: these must be adhered to.

TLP: GREEN

Limited disclosure, restricted to the community.
Sources may use TLP:GREEN when information is useful for the awareness of all participating organizations as well as with peers within the broader community or sector. Recipients may share TLP:GREEN information with peers and partner organizations within their sector or community, but not via publicly accessible channels. Information in this category can be circulated widely within a particular community. TLP:GREEN information may not be released outside of the community.

TLP: WHITE

Disclosure is not limited.
Sources may use TLP:WHITE when information carries minimal or no foreseeable risk of misuse, in accordance with applicable rules and procedures for public release. Subject to standard copyright rules, TLP:WHITE information may be distributed without restriction.