A bug in a cloud system used to manage SonicWall firewalls was recently discovered. The bug could allow hackers to enter thousands of corporate networks.
Corporate firewalls and virtual private network devices are vital systems for protecting corporate networks from hackers and various attacks on cyberspace. Hackers are known to search errors in critical network tools to infiltrate corporate networks in order to steal data or install malware.
Vaggelis Stykas, a researcher at the security company Pen Test Partners, found the new bug in SonicWall's Global Management System (GMS), a web application that allows IT departments to remotely configure SonicWall devices in network.
However, the error, in case someone took advantage of it, meant that any existing user with access in SonicWall GMS could create a user account with access to anyone else's network company without permission.
From there, the newly created account could remotely manage this company's SonicWall tools.
In a blog post shared with TechCrunch, Stykas said there were two barriers to entry. First, an aspirant intruder would need an existing SonicWall GMS user account. The easiest way - and what Stykas did to independently check the error - was to buy a SonicWall device.
The second issue was that the would-be intruder would have to guess a unique seven-digit number associated with network of another company. But Stykas said that number was consecutive and the hacker could easily have guessed.
If the hacker managed to break into a company's network, he could deliver ransomware directly to the internal systems of victims - a very popular tactic of hackers who carry out attacks with financial motives.
SonicWall has confirmed that the error has now been fixed. But Stykas criticized the company for more than two weeks to correct the vulnerability, which the company described as "insignificant".
"Even car alarm sellers have fixed similar problems within three days of our report," the researcher said.
A SonicWall spokesman defended the company's decision, saying it had to submit the correction to a "complete" quality control before it was released.