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Trend Micro helps uncover critical file sharing Samba bug

By Shannon Williams
Thu 10 Feb 2022

Trend Micro has confirmed its played a instrumental role in finding and reporting a critical vulnerability in the file sharing protocol Samba.

"This latest vulnerability disclosure comes on the heels of the recent Log4j vulnerability and highlights the challenges many global security teams have in mitigating risk across a multitude of applications and open source software," says Jon Clay, vice president of threat intelligence at Trend Micro. 

"The good news is this was found during our Pwn2Own event, which means we had an opportunity to work with the developers to responsibly patch and disclose the vulnerabilities. So far, we have not heard of any in-the-wild attacks occurring."

Trend Micro's Pwn2Own events run regularly around the world, challenging contestants to find new vulnerabilities and exploits in widely used software and systems. They are part of a company-wide effort to enhance cybersecurity for customers and the entire online community through the ZDI and Trend Micro's own global threat intelligence team of thousands of researchers.

These efforts are increasingly important as organisations continue to digitally transform, expanding their attack surface and reliance on software  particularly open source components.

The vulnerability in question, CVE-2021-44142, was given a CVSS score of 9.9, illustrating its potentially critical impact on affected organisations. If exploited, the out-of-bounds heap read write bug could allow remote attackers to execute arbitrary code as root.

While no exploits of this vulnerability have been seen in the wild, the window in which affected organisations must patch critical new vulnerabilities before threat actors start exploiting them is increasingly short.

"Trend Micro therefore calls on all organisations to patch CVE-2021-44142 or update to the latest Samba version as a matter of urgency," the cybersecurity firm says.

 The vulnerability was originally disclosed at Pwn2Own Austin 2021 by Nguyen Hoang Thach and Billy Jheng Bing-Jhong of STAR Labs. Lucas Leong of Trend Micro's ZDI discovered additional variants which were disclosed to Samba as part of this fix. 

The original issue was also independently found by Orange Tsai of DEVCORE. The ZDI is the world's largest vendor-agnostic bug bounty program. Since 2005, it has been making software safer by incentivizing researchers to find and responsibly disclose vulnerabilities to vendors.

Trend Micro, a global cybersecurity leader, helps make the world safe for exchanging digital information. Trend Micro's cybersecurity platform protects hundreds of thousands of organisations and millions of individuals across clouds, networks, devices, and endpoints.

The platform delivers a powerful range of advanced threat defense techniques optimised for environments like AWS, Microsoft, and Google, and central visibility for better, faster detection and response. 

With some 7000 employees across 65 countries, Trend Micro enables organisations to simplify and secure their connected world. 

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