Multiple Vulnerabilities in Fortinet FortiNAC Could Allow for Arbitrary Code Execution

ITS ADVISORY NUMBER:
2023-068

DATE(S) ISSUED:
06/23/2023

SUBJECT:
Multiple Vulnerabilities in Fortinet FortiNAC Could Allow for Arbitrary Code Execution​​

OVERVIEW:
Multiple vulnerabilities have been discovered in Fortinet FortiNAC, the most severe of which could allow for arbitrary code execution. FortiNAC is a network access control solution offered by Fortinet that manages network-wide access policies, gains visibility of devices and users, and secures the network against unauthorized access and threats. Successful exploitation of the most severe of these vulnerabilities could allow for arbitrary code execution in the context of the affected service account. Depending on the privileges associated with the service account an attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights. Service accounts that are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than those who operate with administrative user rights.

THREAT INTELLIGENCE:
There are currently no reports of these vulnerabilities being exploited in the wild.

SYSTEMS AFFECTED:

  • FortiNAC version 9.4.0 through 9.4.3
  • FortiNAC version 9.2.0 through 9.2.7
  • FortiNAC version 9.1.0 through 9.1.9
  • FortiNAC version 7.2.0 through 7.2.1
  • FortiNAC 8.8 all versions
  • FortiNAC 8.7 all versions
  • FortiNAC 8.6 all versions
  • FortiNAC 8.5 all versions
  • FortiNAC 8.3 all versions

 

RISK:
Government:

  • Large and medium government entities: High
  • Small government entities: Medium

 

Businesses:

  • Large and medium business entities: High
  • Small business entities: Medium

Home users: Low

TECHNICAL SUMMARY:
Multiple vulnerabilities have been discovered in Fortinet FortiNAC, the most severe of which could allow for arbitrary code execution. Details of the most severe vulnerability are as follows: 

TacticInitial Access (TA0001):

Technique: Exploit Public-Facing Application (T1190):

  • CVE-2023-33299 - Java untrusted object deserialization RCE in FortiNAC - A deserialization of untrusted data vulnerability [CWE-502] in FortiNAC may allow an unauthenticated user to execute unauthorized code or commands via specifically crafted requests sent to the service on TCP port 1050.

Details of the lower-severity vulnerability are as follows:

  • CVE-2023-33300 - Argument injection in XML interface on port tcp/5555 in FortiNAC - An improper neutralization of special elements used in a command ('command injection') vulnerability [CWE-77] in FortiNAC tcp/5555 service may allow an unauthenticated attacker to copy local files of the device to other local directories of the device via specially crafted input fields. To access the copied data, however, the attacker must have an already existing foothold on the device with sufficient privileges

Successful exploitation of the most severe of these vulnerabilities could allow for arbitrary code execution in the context of the affected service account. Depending on the privileges associated with the service account an attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights. Service accounts that are configured to have fewer user rights on the system could be less impacted than those who operate with administrative user rights.

RECOMMENDATIONS:
We recommend the following actions be taken:

  • Apply appropriate updates provided by Fortinet to vulnerable systems immediately after appropriate testing. (M1051: Update Software)
    • Safeguard 7.1: Establish and Maintain a Vulnerability Management Process: Establish and maintain a documented vulnerability management process for enterprise assets. Review and update documentation annually, or when significant enterprise changes occur that could impact this Safeguard.
    • Safeguard 7.2: Establish and Maintain a Remediation Process: Establish and maintain a risk-based remediation strategy documented in a remediation process, with monthly, or more frequent, reviews.
    • Safeguard 7.3: Perform Automated Operating System Patch Management: Perform operating system updates on enterprise assets through automated patch management on a monthly, or more frequent, basis
    • Safeguard 7.4: Perform Automated Application Patch Management: Perform application updates on enterprise assets through automated patch management on a monthly, or more frequent, basis.
    • Safeguard 7.6: Perform Automated Vulnerability Scans of Externally-Exposed Enterprise Assets: Perform automated vulnerability scans of externally-exposed enterprise assets using a SCAP-compliant vulnerability scanning tool. Perform scans on a monthly, or more frequent, basis.
    • Safeguard 7.7: Remediate Detected Vulnerabilities: Remediate detected vulnerabilities in software through processes and tooling on a monthly, or more frequent, basis, based on the remediation process.
    • Safeguard 12.1: Ensure Network Infrastructure is Up-to-Date: Ensure network infrastructure is kept up-to-date. Example implementations include running the latest stable release of software and/or using currently supported network-as-a-service (NaaS) offerings. Review software versions monthly, or more frequently, to verify software support.
    • Safeguard 18.1: Establish and Maintain a Penetration Testing Program: Establish and maintain a penetration testing program appropriate to the size, complexity, and maturity of the enterprise. Penetration testing program characteristics include scope, such as network, web application, Application Programming Interface (API), hosted services, and physical premise controls; frequency; limitations, such as acceptable hours, and excluded attack types; point of contact information; remediation, such as how findings will be routed internally; and retrospective requirements.
    • Safeguard 18.2: Perform Periodic External Penetration Tests: Perform periodic external penetration tests based on program requirements, no less than annually. External penetration testing must include enterprise and environmental reconnaissance to detect exploitable information. Penetration testing requires specialized skills and experience and must be conducted through a qualified party. The testing may be clear box or opaque box.
    • Safeguard 18.3: Remediate Penetration Test Findings: Remediate penetration test findings based on the enterprise’s policy for remediation scope and prioritization.
  • Vulnerability scanning is used to find potentially exploitable software vulnerabilities to remediate them. (M1016: Vulnerability Scanning)
    • Safeguard 16.13: Conduct Application Penetration Testing: Conduct application penetration testing. For critical applications, authenticated penetration testing is better suited to finding business logic vulnerabilities than code scanning and automated security testing. Penetration testing relies on the skill of the tester to manually manipulate an application as an authenticated and unauthenticated user
  • Apply the Principle of Least Privilege to all systems and services. Run all software as a non-privileged user (one without administrative privileges) to diminish the effects of a successful attack. (M1026: Privileged Account Management)
    • Safeguard 4.7: Manage Default Accounts on Enterprise Assets and Software: Manage default accounts on enterprise assets and software, such as root, administrator, and other pre-configured vendor accounts. Example implementations can include: disabling default accounts or making them unusable.
    • Safeguard 5.4: Restrict Administrator Privileges to Dedicated Administrator Accounts: Restrict administrator privileges to dedicated administrator accounts on enterprise assets. Conduct general computing activities, such as internet browsing, email, and productivity suite use, from the user’s primary, non-privileged account.
    • Safeguard 5.5: Establish and Maintain an Inventory of Service Accounts: Establish and maintain an inventory of service accounts. The inventory, at a minimum, must contain department owner, review date, and purpose. Perform service account reviews to validate that all active accounts are authorized, on a recurring schedule at a minimum quarterly, or more frequently.
    • Safeguard 6.8: Define and Maintain Role-Based Access Control: Define and maintain role-based access control, through determining and documenting the access rights necessary for each role within the enterprise to successfully carry out its assigned duties. Perform access control reviews of enterprise assets to validate that all privileges are authorized, on a recurring schedule at a minimum annually, or more frequently.
  • Architect sections of the network to isolate critical systems, functions, or resources. Use physical and logical segmentation to prevent access to potentially sensitive systems and information. Use a DMZ to contain any internet-facing services that should not be exposed from the internal network. Configure separate virtual private cloud (VPC) instances to isolate critical cloud systems. (M1030: Network Segmentation)
    • Safeguard 12.2: Establish and Maintain a Secure Network Architecture: Establish and maintain a secure network architecture. A secure network architecture must address segmentation, least privilege, and availability, at a minimum.
  • Restrict execution of code to a virtual environment on or in transit to an endpoint system. (M1048: Application Isolation and Sandboxing)
    • Safeguard 16.8: Separate Production and Non-Production Systems: Maintain separate environments for production and non-production systems.
  • Use capabilities to detect and block conditions that may lead to or be indicative of a software exploit occurring. (M1050: Exploit Protection)
    • Safeguard 13.10:  Performing Application Layer Filtering:  Perform application layer filtering. Example implementations include a filtering proxy, application layer firewall, or gateway.
  • Inform and educate users regarding the threats posed by hypertext links contained in emails or attachments especially from un-trusted sources. Remind users not to visit un-trusted websites or follow links provided by unknown or un-trusted sources. (M1017: User Training)
    • Safeguard 14.1: Establish and Maintain a Security Awareness Program: Establish and maintain a security awareness program. The purpose of a security awareness program is to educate the enterprise’s workforce on how to interact with enterprise assets and data in a secure manner. Conduct training at hire and, at a minimum, annually. Review and update content annually, or when significant enterprise changes occur that could impact this Safeguard.
    • Safeguard 14.2: Train Workforce Members to Recognize Social Engineering Attacks: Train workforce members to recognize social engineering attacks, such as phishing, pre-texting, and tailgating.

REFERENCES:

Fortinet:
https://www.fortiguard.com/psirt?date=06-2023

CVE:
https://cve.mitre.org/cgi-bin/cvename.cgi?name=CVE-2023-33299
https://cve.mitre.org/cgi-bin/cvename.cgi?name=CVE-2023-33300