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Advisory (ICSA-14-010-01)

MatrikonOPC Improper Input Validation

Original release date: February 11, 2014 | Last revised: February 12, 2014

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OVERVIEW

This advisory was originally posted to the US-CERT secure Portal library on January 10, 2014, and is now being released to the NCCIC/ICS-CERT web site.

Adam Crain of Automatak and independent researcher Chris Sistrunk have identified an improper input validation vulnerability in the MatrikonOPC SCADA DNP3 OPC Server application. MatrikonOPC has produced a patch that mitigates this vulnerability. The researchers have tested the patch to validate that it resolves the vulnerability.

This vulnerability could be exploited remotely.

AFFECTED PRODUCTS

The following MatrikonOPC versions are affected:

  • MatrikonOPC SCADA DNP3 OPC Server Version 1.2.2.0 and older.

IMPACT

An attacker could potentially use this vulnerability to craft an exploit to cause a denial-of-service (DoS) loop in the MatrikonOPC Server for DNP3 Windows service. This requires a reboot of the system to restart DNP3 communications. After the service has been put into the DoS condition, the configuration tool experiences a read access violation.

Impact to individual organizations depends on many factors that are unique to each organization. NCCIC/ICS-CERT recommends that organizations evaluate the impact of this vulnerability based on their operational environment, architecture, and product implementation.

BACKGROUND

MatrikonOPC is an Edmonton, Canada-based company that maintains offices in several countries around the world, including the United States, Canada, Germany, Russia, Australia, Singapore, Norway, Brazil, UK, India, Spain, Portugal, and Costa Rica.

The affected product, SCADA DNP3 OPC Server, is Microsoft Windows-based software that facilitates connectivity to multiple DNP3 compliant devices such as remote terminal units, programmable logic circuits, and meters. According to MatrikonOPC, the SCADA DNP3 OPC Server is deployed across several sectors including chemical and energy. MatrikonOPC products are used primarily in the US, Canada, and UK.

VULNERABILITY CHARACTERIZATION

VULNERABILITY OVERVIEW

IMPROPER INPUT VALIDATIONa

The susceptible versions of MatrikonOPC contain a specific vulnerability that may cause the server to exit and communications to stop. This only happens after the server (master station) successfully connects to a device (outstation) and that device returns a malformed DNP3 packet. The process never recovers and cannot be shut down. The Windows operating system on the master station would have to be rebooted to reestablish communications. After the service has been put in a DoS condition, the configuration tool experiences a read access violation on further reboots.

CVE-2013-2829b has been assigned to this vulnerability. A CVSS v2 base score of 7.1 has been assigned; the CVSS vector string is (AV:N/AC:M/Au:N/C:N/I:N/A:C).c

VULNERABILITY DETAILS

EXPLOITABILITY

This vulnerability could be exploited remotely.

EXISTENCE OF EXPLOIT

No known public exploits specifically target this vulnerability.

DIFFICULTY

An attacker with a moderate skill would be able to exploit this vulnerability.

MITIGATION

MatrikonOPC recommends that customers obtain and install the patch as follows:

The researchers suggest the following mitigation:

  • Block DNP3 traffic from traversing onto business or corporate networks through the use of an IPS or firewall with DPN3-specific rule sets.

NCCIC/ICS-CERT encourages asset owners to take additional defensive measures to protect against this and other cybersecurity risks.

  • Minimize network exposure for all control system devices and/or systems, and ensure that they are not accessible from the Internet.
  • Locate control system networks and remote devices behind firewalls, and isolate them from the business network.
  • When remote access is required, use secure methods, such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), recognizing that VPN is only as secure as the connected devices.

NCCIC/ICS-CERT also provides a section for control systems security recommended practices on the NCCIC/ICS-CERT Web page at http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/content/recommended-practices. Several recommended practices are available for reading and download, including Improving Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity with Defense-in-Depth Strategies. NCCIC/ICS-CERT reminds organizations to perform proper impact analysis and risk assessment prior to deploying defensive measures.

Additional mitigation guidance and recommended practices are publicly available in the NCCIC/ICS-CERT Technical Information Paper, ICS-TIP-12-146-01B—Targeted Cyber Intrusion Mitigation Strategies, that is available for download from the NCCIC/ICS-CERT Web site (http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/).

Organizations observing any suspected malicious activity should follow their established internal procedures and report their findings to NCCIC/ICS-CERT for tracking and correlation against other incidents.


Contact Information

For any questions related to this report, please contact ICS-CERT at:

Email: ics-cert@hq.dhs.gov
Toll Free: 1-877-776-7585
International Callers: (208) 526-0900

For industrial control systems security information and incident reporting: http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov

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