Security Experts:

Nine Vulnerabilities Patched in WordPress

WordPress 4.8.2 patches nine vulnerabilities affecting version 4.8.1 and earlier, including cross-site scripting (XSS), SQL injection, path traversal and open redirect flaws.

The security update addresses one potential SQL injection vulnerability that exists due to the $wpdb->prepare() function creating unexpected and unsafe queries. The flaw, reported by a researcher who uses the online moniker “Slavco,” does not affect the WordPress core directly, but developers have added hardening to prevent plugins and themes from accidentally creating a vulnerability.

A total of five XSS flaws were patched in the latest version of WordPress, including in oEmbed discovery, the visual editor, the plugin editor, template names and the link modal.

These security holes were discovered and reported by Rodolfo Assis of Sucuri, Chen Ruiqi, Anas Roubi, a Croatian expert who uses the online moniker “sikic,” and a member of the WordPress Security Team.

Another member of the WordPress Security Team discovered a path traversal vulnerability in the customizer. A similar flaw was also found by Alex Chapman in the file unzipping code.

Finally, WordPress 4.8.2 fixes an open redirect issue discovered in the user and term edit screens by Yasin Soliman.

Given its popularity, it’s not surprising that WordPress is the most targeted content management system (CMS), and it’s not uncommon for hackers to start exploiting vulnerabilities shortly after their existence comes to light.

WordPress launched a bug bounty program in April to encourage white hat hackers to responsibly disclose vulnerabilities. While WordPress has only disclosed a few of the bounties paid out to researchers, the highest reward to date, $1,337, is for a cross-site request forgery (CSRF). Other flaws earned hackers between $150 and $400.

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Eduard Kovacs is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.