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Lenovo Patches Critical Wi-Fi Vulnerabilities

Lenovo has released patches for two critical vulnerabilities that were found last year in certain Broadcom Wi-Fi controllers.

Identified as CVE-2017-11120 and CVE-2017-11121, the two issues were discovered by Google Project Zero and were publicly disclosed in September 2017.

Both vulnerabilities affect Broadcom Wi-Fi chips found in many mobile devices, thus having an industry-wide impact. Both were addressed in the Android and iOS operating systems in September last year.

When disclosing the bugs, Gal Beniamini of Google Project Zero explained that an attacker within Wi-Fi range could exploit CVE-2017-11120, an out-of-bounds write issue, to achieve arbitrary code execution on an impacted device.

“Upon successful execution of the exploit, a backdoor is inserted into the firmware, allowing remote read/write commands to be issued to the firmware via crafted action frames (thus allowing easy remote control over the Wi-Fi chip),” the researcher said.

CVE-2017-11121 can be abused by means of malicious over-the-air Fast Transition frames designed to trigger internal Wi-Fi firmware heap and/or stack overflows. This could lead to remote code execution as well.

“Broadcom has issued an advisory for certain Broadcom WiFi controllers used by many computer and device makers, which contain buffer overflow vulnerabilities on the adapter (not the system CPU),” Lenovo noted in an advisory last week.

The computer maker also notes that, while it “initially did not plan to remediate these issues,” Broadcom released patches after the WPA2 KRACK vulnerability became public, to address both bugs.

“Lenovo received the first of these near the end of 2017, and continues releasing fixes as integration and testing is completed,” the company says.

Lenovo explains that only its ThinkPad products pack the affected Broadcom WiFi controllers. The computer maker also published a list of all impacted ThinkPad devices and recommends users to update to the WiFi driver version (or newer) indicated for their models.

Related: Google Discloses Critical Wi-Fi Flaws Affecting iOS, Android

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