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U.S. Department of Homeland Security Seal. ICS-CERT. Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team.

Advisory (ICSA-12-032-02)

GE Intelligent Platforms Proficy Plant Applications Memory Corruption Vulnerabilities

Original release date: March 13, 2012 | Last revised: August 28, 2013

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ICS-CERT received a report from GE Intelligent Platforms and the Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) concerning multiple memory corruption vulnerabilities in the GE Intelligent Platforms Proficy Plant Applications. These vulnerabilities were reported to ZDI by independent security researcher Luigi Auriemma.

If exploited, these vulnerabilities could allow an attacker to cause multiple Proficy services to crash, which may lead to arbitrary code execution. concerning multiple memory corruption vulnerabilities in the GE Intelligent Platforms Proficy Plant Applications. These vulnerabilities were reported to ZDI by independent security researcher Luigi Auriemma.

GE Intelligent Platforms has created patches to address these issues.

Affected Products

The following product and versions are affected:

  • Proficy Plant Applications: Versions 5.0 and prior.


Exploitation of these vulnerabilities could cause multiple Proficy services to crash and potentially allow an attacker to take control of a system running the affected software.

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


According to GE, Proficy Plant Applications suite is an Operations Management software product that is deployed across multiple industries worldwide.

Vulnerability Characterization

Vulnerability Overview

PRRDS.EXE Memory Corruption

Proficy Remote Data Service (PRRDS.exe) listens on Port 12299/TCP by default. CVE-2012-02301 has been assigned to this vulnerability.

PRLICENSEMGR.EXE Memory Corruption

Proficy Server License Manager (PRLicenseMgr.exe) listens on Port 12401/TCP by default. CVE-2012-02312 has been assigned to this vulnerability.

Vulnerability Details


These vulnerabilities are remotely exploitable.

Existence of Exploit

No known public exploits specifically target these vulnerabilities.


An attacker with a moderate skill level would be able to exploit these vulnerabilities.


GE Intelligent Platforms recommends that customers apply product updates to supported Proficy PlantApplications Versions 5.0 and 4.4.1. Proficy Plant Applications customers using unsupported Versions 4.3.1, 4.2.3, 4.2.2, and 215.8 should contact GE Intelligent Platforms Support for assistance with obtaining and applying a patch. GE Intelligent Platforms urges all customers to follow the recommendations in their security advisory.

Note: A valid GE user ID and Customer Service Number are required to access the advisories and updates. Proficy SIMs are cumulative. All future SIMs will include these updates.

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. Critical devices should not directly face the Internet.
  • Locate control system networks and remote devices behind firewalls with properly configured rules addressing Port 12299/TCP and Port 12401/TCP, 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.

The Control Systems Security Program (CSSP) also provides a section for control systems security recommended practices on the CSSP web page. Several recommended practices are available for reading and download, including Improving Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity with Defense-in-Depth Strategies.

Organizations observing any suspected malicious activity should follow their established internal procedures and report their findings to ICS-CERT for tracking and correlation against other incidents. ICS-CERT reminds organizations to perform proper impact analysis and risk assessment prior to taking defensive measures.

In addition, ICS-CERT recommends that users take the following measures to protect themselves from social engineering attacks:

  1. Do not click web links or open unsolicited attachments in e-mail messages.
  2. Refer to Recognizing and Avoiding Email Scams for more information on avoiding e-mail scams.
  3. Refer to Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks for more information on social engineering attacks.

Contact Information

For any questions related to this report, please contact the NCCIC at:

Toll Free: 1-888-282-0870

For industrial control systems cybersecurity information:  http://ics-cert.us-cert.gov 
or incident reporting:  https://ics-cert.us-cert.gov/Report-Incident?

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