Security Experts:

Apache Patches Fifty Bugs, Two Security Flaws, in Web Server

The Apache Software Foundation has fixed over fifty bugs, including two security vulnerabilities, in its venerable Web server software.

The latest release, version 2.4.3, contains two significant security updates, including a fix for a cross-site scripting flaw that could allow an attacker to upload files to a remote server and an issue with closing back-end connections that "could lead to privacy issues due to a response mixup," according to the release notes. Another known issue in which SSL connections to fail when running Apache on Windows was also fixed.

The back-end connection problem exists in mod_proxy_ajp and mod_proxy_http. The cross site scripting flaw exists in mod_negotiation, and was fixed by escaping filenames, according to the advisory. There is little information available about CVE-2012-3502 and CVE-2012-2687.

"We consider this release to be the best version of Apache available, and encourage users of all prior versions to upgrade," according to the release notes.

The cross-site scripting flaw was reported to the security team at the end of May and publicized in middle of June. It is rated as being "low" in priority. The privacy issue flaw was first publicized Aug. 16, and is rated as "important."

"Given the lack of vulnerabilities rated as “critical”, we recommend rolling out this new version of Apache within your normal update and deployment cycle, starting in your development environment, QA cycle and production release," Wolfgang Kandek, CTO of Qualys, told SecurityWeek.

The SSL issue fixed in this release is a know issue that has affected the Web server running on Windows since version 2.4.2. "The known issue with AcceptFilter None replacing Win32DisableAcceptEx has been resolved with version 2.4.3, making Apache httpd 2.4.x suitable for Windows servers," according to the notes.  

Version 2.4.3 also fixed nearly 50 non-security bugs to improve the performance and reliability of the server.

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Fahmida Y. Rashid is a Senior Contributing Writer for SecurityWeek. She has experience writing and reviewing security, core Internet infrastructure, open source, networking, and storage. Before setting out her journalism shingle, she spent nine years as a help-desk technician, software and Web application developer, network administrator, and technology consultant.