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[CVSS 9+] Critical Juniper Vulnerability: Patch Now!

What Happened

Juniper Networks has addressed a critical juniper vulnerability in its SRX Series firewalls and EX Series switches. The vulnerability, identified as CVE-2024-21591, is an out-of-bounds write issue in the J-Web configuration interface of Junos OS.

Rated 9.8 on the CVSS scoring system, this critical juniper vulnerability could allow unauthenticated, network-based attackers to execute code remotely and obtain root privileges. The flaw arises from the use of an insecure function that enables overwriting arbitrary memory addresses.

Juniper’s Recommendations

The affected versions include various Junos OS releases. The issue has been resolved in versions 20.4R3-S9, 21.2R3-S7, 21.3R3-S5, 21.4R3-S5, 22.1R3-S4, 22.2R3-S3, 22.3R3-S2, 22.4R2-S2, 22.4R3, 23.2R1-S1, 23.2R2, 23.4R1, and later. Users are advised to update their systems to these versions to mitigate the risk associated with this critical Juniper vulnerability.

Additionally, as a temporary solution, Juniper suggests disabling J-Web or restricting its access to trusted hosts.

For further details, please refer to the Juniper’s advisory.

Juniper Vulnerabilities Exploited in Recent Months

In November 2023, CISA issued a warning about actively exploited Juniper vulnerabilities. This alert includes the following vulnerabilities impacting Juniper SRX firewalls and EX switches:

  • CVE-2023-36844: Juniper Junos OS EX Series PHP External Variable Modification Vulnerability with a CVSS score of 5.3,
  • CVE-2023-36845: Juniper Junos OS EX Series and SRX Series PHP External Variable Modification Vulnerability with a CVSS score of 9.8,
  • CVE-2023-36846: Juniper Junos OS SRX Series Missing Authentication for Critical Function Vulnerability with a CVSS score of 5.3,
  • CVE-2023-36847: Juniper Junos OS EX Series Missing Authentication for Critical Function Vulnerability with a CVSS score of 5.3),
  • CVE-2023-36851 Juniper Junos OS SRX Series Missing Authentication for Critical Function Vulnerability with a CVSS score of 5.3.

CISA added them to its Known Exploited Vulnerabilities Catalog, citing them as significant risks.

Closing Comments

The recently resolved Juniper vulnerability CVE-2024-21591 is classified as critical. It’s important to note that there have been no known exploits of this vulnerability thus far. However, given the history of targeted attacks on Juniper products, it is crucial for organisations to prioritise Juniper security updates.

Organisations using Juniper Networks’ SRX Series firewalls and EX Series switches should promptly apply the provided patches. It is also essential for them to remain vigilant and proactive in their cybersecurity measures, given the interest in exploiting Juniper vulnerabilities. Regular monitoring of advisories and timely implementation of security measures are necessary to protect against potential cybersecurity threats.

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