Security Experts:

FIRST Releases CVSS Version 3

The Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST) announced this week the availability of version 3 of the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS).

CVSS provides a framework for communicating the characteristics and impact of security bugs. CVSS v2 has been used by many organizations over the past years to rate vulnerabilities, but experts say this version has many faults and shortcomings.


In May 2012, FIRST established the CVSS Special Interest Group (SIG) to oversee the development of a new version of CVSS to address existing concerns. Work on CVSS version 3 started in June 2012.

On June 10, 2015, after three years in which it received input from the representatives of a broad range of industries, FIRST announced the availability of CVSS v3, which aims to provide a more robust and useful scoring system for vulnerabilities.

The organization says the updated version of CVSS promotes consistency in scoring, and it brings new scoring tips to provide better guidance for users. CVSS version 3 has also been adapted to be more applicable to modern concerns.

The base score for CVSS v3 is calculated based on factors such as attack vector, attack complexity, privilege required, user interaction, scope, confidentiality, integrity, and availability. The temporal score is obtained based on exploitability, remediation level, and report confidence.

“We hope that CVSS version 3 is clear, consistent and repeatable, and able to support the work of those who seek to understand, describe, compare, or evaluate IT vulnerabilities via a common scoring system,” said Seth Hanford, co-chair of the FIRST CVSSv3 working group. “Our aim has been to provide a system that is flexible enough to handle both the challenges that have emerged in vulnerability scoring in recent years, as well as those that we will see in the years to come.”

Additional details on CVSS v3 and a score calculator are available online.

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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.