September 2022 Patch Tuesday: One Active Zero-Day and Five Critical CVEs

Microsoft has released 63 security patches for its September 2022 Patch Tuesday rollout. Five vulnerabilities are rated Critical, 57 are rated Important, one is Moderate, and one is rated Low in severity. This month’s release includes a bug discovered by CrowdStrike in conjunction with other security researchers: CVE-2022-37969 is publicly known and there is evidence it has been exploited in the wild.

In this blog, the CrowdStrike Falcon Spotlight™ team analyzes this month’s vulnerabilities, highlights the most severe CVEs and recommends how to prioritize patching. 

September 2022 Risk Analysis

This month’s leading risk type is remote code execution (48%), followed by elevation of privilege at nearly 29%, and information disclosure and denial of service, both at 11%. Remote code execution (RCE) vulnerabilities are among the most dangerous and high-impact vulnerabilities in existence. Many major cyberattacks have been enabled by RCE vulnerabilities, including Log4j. Rigorously enforcing the principle of least privilege and knowing where the most sensitive company data is stored are critical for creating a defensive security posture.

Figure 1. Breakdown of September 2022 Patch Tuesday attack types

The Microsoft Windows product family received the most patches this month with 48, followed by Extended Support Updates (36) and Microsoft Office products (7). One zero-day vulnerability being used in active attacks is also covered in the update. This CVE affects Windows Common Log File System Driver and is rated as Important with a CVSS of 7.8.

Figure 2. Breakdown of product families affected by September 2022 Patch Tuesday

Active Attack: Zero-Day Vulnerability Affecting Windows Common Log File System Driver 

There is a patch available for CVE-2022-37969, an actively exploited vulnerability in Microsoft Windows Common Log File System Driver. CrowdStrike reported this zero-day in a combined effort with other vendors (see acknowledgements section in the Microsoft advisory).

On August 29, 2022, the CrowdStrike Falcon OverWatch™ threat hunting team observed malicious remote desktop protocol (RDP) activity against a consumer goods company via an undetermined initial access vector, allowing for delivery and execution of a binary. Preliminary analysis of the malicious tool showed it facilitates local privilege escalation (LPE) on fully patched Windows 10 systems; it should be noted that other Windows versions are also likely affected. As shown in Figure 3, this CVE is ranked as Important.

Rank CVSS Score CVE Description
Important 7.8 CVE-2022-37969 Windows Common Log File System Driver Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability

Figure 3. Zero-day vulnerability patched in September 2022

The two Important vulnerabilities affecting Windows Kerberos this month are elevation of privilege CVEs, both with a CVSS of 8.1, as shown in Figure 4. In the context of Active Directory (AD), Kerberos is intended to be a more secure method of authentication when compared to NTLM. Instead of using passwords as NTLM does, Kerberos uses tickets to authenticate to services. Kerberos tickets contain a user’s logon information in an encrypted form.

Rank CVSS Score CVE Description
Important 8.1 CVE-2022-33647 Windows Kerberos Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability
Important 8.1 CVE-2022-33679 Windows Kerberos Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability

Figure 4. Windows Kerberos vulnerabilities in September 2022

Critical Vulnerabilities in TCP/IP, IKE and Microsoft Dynamics 365

Let’s explore this month’s critical vulnerabilities. CVE-2022-34718, a Windows TCP/IP remote code execution vulnerability, could allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to execute code with elevated privileges on affected systems without user interaction. This officially puts it into the “wormable” category and earns it a CVSS rating of 9.8 and a rank of Critical. However, only systems with IPv6 enabled and IPSec configured are considered vulnerable.

Two other Critical bugs for Windows Internet Key Exchange (IKE) Protocol Extensions could also be classified as “wormable,” but only systems running IPSec are affected. The remaining two vulnerabilities in this month’s list affect the on-premises version of Microsoft Dynamics 365 — they could allow an authenticated user to perform SQL injection attacks and execute commands as db_owner within their Dynamics 356 database. CrowdStrike recommends prioritizing these vulnerabilities within your patching strategy if your organization uses these products.

Rank CVSS Score CVE Description
Critical 9.8 CVE-2022-34718 Windows TCP/IP Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Critical 9.8 CVE-2022-34721 Windows Internet Key Exchange (IKE) Protocol Extensions Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Critical 9.8 CVE-2022-34722 Windows Internet Key Exchange (IKE) Protocol Extensions Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Critical 8.8 CVE-2022-34700 Microsoft Dynamics 365 (on-premises) Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Critical 8.8 CVE-2022-35805 Microsoft Dynamics 365 (on-premises) Remote Code Execution Vulnerability

Figure 5. Critical Vulnerabilities in TCP/IP, IKE and Microsoft Dynamics 365

Important Microsoft SharePoint Server Vulnerabilities

Four Important remote code execution vulnerabilities affecting Microsoft SharePoint Server are receiving patches this month. It’s important to note that Microsoft customers running SharePoint Enterprise Server 2013 Service Pack 1 should also install the wssloc update as it contains language pack updates (this applies to CVE-2022-38008) per Microsoft advisory.

Rank CVSS Score CVE Description
Important 8.8 CVE-2022-38009 Microsoft SharePoint Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Important 8.8 CVE-2022-38008 Microsoft SharePoint Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Important 8.8 CVE-2022-37961 Microsoft SharePoint Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability
Important 8.1 CVE-2022-35823 Microsoft SharePoint Server Remote Code Execution Vulnerability

Figure 6. Important Microsoft SharePoint Server vulnerabilities

Consider How Your Patching Strategy Affects Your Organization

Vulnerability management does not live in a vacuum. While it’s vitally important to prioritize the vulnerabilities that are critical to the functions of your business, remember that vulnerability management lives within the broader context of security operations and subsequently within the cybersecurity organization. 

What gets patched and what is moved to the back burner should be taken into consideration in conjunction with other areas of a defensive security posture, including security hygiene and XDR. Your organization’s security strategy, and what is involved in your patching program, could have a direct impact on the strength of your organization’s security. It’s important to develop a strategy that works together with the broader organization’s security goals, not just within security operations. 

Learn More

This video on Falcon Spotlight™ vulnerability management shows how you can quickly monitor and prioritize vulnerabilities within the systems and applications in your organization. 

About CVSS Scores

The Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) is a free and open industry standard that CrowdStrike and many other cybersecurity organizations use to assess and communicate software vulnerabilities’ severity and characteristics. The CVSS Base Score ranges from 0.0 to 10.0, and the National Vulnerability Database (NVD) adds a severity rating for CVSS scores. Learn more about vulnerability scoring in this article

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