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Hackers Can Compromise VMware vCenter Server Via Newly Patched Flaw

VMware has patched a critical vulnerability that can be exploited to compromise vCenter Server or other services that rely on the Directory Service for authentication.

VMware has patched a critical vulnerability that can be exploited to compromise vCenter Server or other services that rely on the Directory Service for authentication.

The flaw, tracked as CVE-2020-3952 with a CVSS score of 10, was disclosed by VMware on Thursday. The virtualization giant learned of its existence from a researcher who has not been named in the company’s security advisory.

The weakness impacts vCenter Server 6.7 on Windows and virtual appliances, and it has been patched with the 6.7u3f update. However, the company noted that vCenter Server is affected only if the installation was upgraded from a previous version; the product is not impacted if the user directly installed version 6.7.

VMware described the vulnerability as an information disclosure issue related to the Directory Service (vmdir).

“Under certain conditions vmdir that ships with VMware vCenter Server, as part of an embedded or external Platform Services Controller (PSC), does not correctly implement access controls,” VMware said in its advisory.

“A malicious actor with network access to an affected vmdir deployment may be able to extract highly sensitive information which could be used to compromise vCenter Server or other services which are dependent upon vmdir for authentication,” the company added.

VMware says users can determine if they are affected by checking their logs for certain vmdir entries.

Last month, VMware released two patches for a privilege escalation vulnerability affecting the macOS version of Fusion. However, the researchers who reported the issue to VMware said both of them were incomplete.

Related: Critical Flaw in VMware Workstation, Fusion Allows Code Execution on Host From Guest

Related: Vulnerabilities Found in VMware Tools, Workspace ONE SDK

Related: VMware Patches ESXi Vulnerability That Earned Hacker $200,000

Related: VMware Patches Serious Flaws in vRealize Operations for Horizon Adapter

Written By

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.

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