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CVE-2022-47939: Critical RCE Vulnerability in Linux Kernel

CVE-2022-47939: Critical RCE Vulnerability in Linux Kernel

A critical remote code execution vulnerability in the Linux kernel has been publicly disclosed by Trend Micro's Zero Day Initiative in its ZDI-22-1690 advisory. The vulnerability has been given a CVSSv3 of 10.0. There are no reports of active exploitation.

Background

On December 22, Trend Micro's Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) released an advisory detailing a critical remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability in the Linux kernel. The affected component, ksmbd, is a Server Message Block (SMB) file server module released in August 2021 in kernel version 5.15. Initially, the vulnerability details were released without a CVE identifier, however MITRE eventually assigned it CVE-2022-47939 on December 23.

ZDI disclosed the vulnerability to the Linux team in July 2022, and was patched on August 17 in the 5.15.61 release.

Analysis

CVE-2022-47939 is a use-after-free vulnerability in the ksmbd SMB file server module of the Linux kernel. According to the advisory, this vulnerability would allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on impacted systems that have ksmbd enabled. The vulnerability has been given the highest possible CVSSv3 score of 10.0 and is considered critical severity.

The vulnerability exists in the SMB2_TREE_DISCONNECT function of the module, which fails to verify an object's existence before it attempts performing operations on the object. However, because ksmbd is not widely adopted and is not enabled by default in most Linux operating systems, it is unlikely that active exploitation will be seen in the future.

Proof of concept

At the time this blog was published, no proof-of-concept code had been released for CVE-2022-47939.

Vendor response

The maintainers released patches in August 2022. Because the ksmbd module was recently introduced in kernel version 5.15 and is not enabled by default in most Linux operating system (OS) variants, most Linux users are likely unaffected. Below is a table of OS distributions that have so far commented on impact:

Distribution Status
Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6-9 Not Affected
Debian buster Not Affected
Debian bullseye Not Affected
Debian Unstable Affected, fixed in 5.19.6-1
Gentoo Not Affected
Ubuntu bionic Not Affected
Ubuntu focal Not Affected
Ubuntu jammy Affected (5.15.0-53.59), pending release
Ubuntu kinetic Not Affected
Ubuntu trusty Not Affected
Ubuntu upstream Fixed in 6.0~rc1
Ubuntu xenial Not Affected

Solution

As Linux distributions can vary significantly in their implementation of components, customers are advised to consult the vendor relevant to their distribution. Red Hat, Ubuntu and Debian have issued advisories.

Identifying affected systems

A list of Tenable plugins to identify this vulnerability will appear here as it is released and will be updated as more vendors address this flaw. This link uses a search filter to ensure that all matching Tenable coverage will appear as it becomes available. In addition, a detection plugin (plugin ID 169382) has been released to identify hosts that have the ksmbd service installed. However, the ksmbd service does not provide a version number of the kernel from which it was distributed and, therefore, the detection plugin should not be used as the sole test for whether a service is vulnerable. Tenable Research recommends relying on our plugins based on the specific Linux vendor advisories for the various distributions to cover this CVE.

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