Security Experts:

Cisco Patches Critical Flaws in Firepower Management Center

During an internal security review, Cisco discovered that its Firepower Management Center product is plagued by several issues, including critical privilege escalation and command execution vulnerabilities.

The Firepower Management Center is described by the vendor as the administrative nerve center for managing Cisco network security solutions, including firewall, intrusion prevention, application control, advanced malware protection and URL filtering products.

Cisco discovered several flaws in the appliance’s web-based graphical user interface (GUI). One of the critical issues, tracked as CVE-2016-1457, allows an authenticated attacker to remotely execute arbitrary commands on the affected device with root-level privileges.

Critical vulnerabilities in Cisco Firepower applianceThe security hole, caused by insufficient authorization checking, affects Firepower Management Center and the Cisco ASA 5500-X series with FirePOWER Services versions 5.4.0, 5.3.1,, 5.2.0 and The bug has been addressed in versions,, 5.4.1 and 6.0.0.

Another critical vulnerability, identified as CVE-2016-1458, allows an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts on the targeted device. The weakness affects the same products and versions as CVE-2016-1457.

Cisco has also identified a medium severity cross-site scripting (XSS) flaw in Firepower Management Center. The flaw can be exploited by a remote, unauthenticated attacker to launch XSS attacks against a user by getting them to access a specially crafted link or by intercepting their requests and injecting them with malicious code.

No workarounds are available for these issues. Cisco says there is no evidence that the flaws have been exploited in the wild.

Cisco also warned users on Wednesday that it has identified a high severity zero-day vulnerability after analyzing the exploits leaked by a threat group calling itself Shadow Brokers. The flaw remains unpatched, but the networking giant has provided some workarounds.

Shadow Brokers has leaked hundreds of megabytes of exploits and implants allegedly stolen from the NSA-linked Equation Group. The exploits published by the hackers also target products from Fortinet, Chinese company TOPSEC, Juniper Networks, WatchGuard and several unknown vendors.

Related: Cisco Fixes Flaws in Network Analysis Modules

Related: No Patch for Critical RCE Flaw in Cisco Routers

Related: Cisco, Juniper Patch Operating System Flaws

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Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at 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.