UPDATED 22:59 EDT / AUGUST 20 2020


Db2 shared memory vulnerability opened door to attackers, but IBM issued a patch

Users of IBM Db2 data management software are being warned of a shared-memory vulnerability that could allow an attacker to gain read and write access and perform unauthorized actions on a targeted system.

Discovered by security researcher Martin Rakhmanov at Trustwave, who revealed the details today, the issue affects IBM Db2 versions for Linux, Unix and Windows (9.7, 10.1, 10.5, 11.1, 11.5). The vulnerability stems from the platform’s developers forgetting to put explicit memory protections around the shared memory used by the Db2 trace facility.

IBM released a patch for the vulnerability in June, but as with all security-related vulnerabilities, the concern is that not every user will have installed the patch. Trustwave is advising all IBM Db2 customers to update the software as soon as possible.

The Db2 trace facility allows users to isolate data points by monitoring selected parameters. While providing a log of control inflow information including functions and associated parameter value which are helpful for technical support, the data can also be used for nefarious purposes by a hacker who gains access.

The lack of protection, allowing an attacker to gain read/write access, opens the door to critically sensitive data as well as the ability to change how the trace subsystem functions, allowing for a denial of service condition for the database. “This means that an unprivileged local user can abuse this to cause a denial of service condition simply by writing incorrect data over that memory section,” Rakhmanov noted.

International Business Machines Corp. developers are not alone in having overlooked putting explicit memory protections around shared memory. Cisco System Inc.’s WebEx service was also found to have a similar issue in June. In that case, attackers could exploit the vulnerability to hijack Webex accounts, allowing them to log in to WebEx accounts, download recordings and view or edit meetings.

Image: IBM

Since you’re here …

Show your support for our mission with our one-click subscription to our YouTube channel (below). The more subscribers we have, the more YouTube will suggest relevant enterprise and emerging technology content to you. Thanks!

Support our mission:    >>>>>>  SUBSCRIBE NOW >>>>>>  to our YouTube channel.

… We’d also like to tell you about our mission and how you can help us fulfill it. SiliconANGLE Media Inc.’s business model is based on the intrinsic value of the content, not advertising. Unlike many online publications, we don’t have a paywall or run banner advertising, because we want to keep our journalism open, without influence or the need to chase traffic.The journalism, reporting and commentary on SiliconANGLE — along with live, unscripted video from our Silicon Valley studio and globe-trotting video teams at theCUBE — take a lot of hard work, time and money. Keeping the quality high requires the support of sponsors who are aligned with our vision of ad-free journalism content.

If you like the reporting, video interviews and other ad-free content here, please take a moment to check out a sample of the video content supported by our sponsors, tweet your support, and keep coming back to SiliconANGLE.