Security Experts:

Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?



Many GitLab Servers Affected by Actively Exploited Flaw Patched Six Months Ago

An actively exploited remote code execution vulnerability in GitLab continues to affect roughly 30,000 Internet-facing installations six months after patches were released, Rapid7 says.

An actively exploited remote code execution vulnerability in GitLab continues to affect roughly 30,000 Internet-facing installations six months after patches were released, Rapid7 says.

Tracked as CVE-2021-22205, the vulnerability was discovered in GitLab Community Edition (CE) and Enterprise Edition (EE), affecting all versions starting from 11.9. The issue was addressed in GitLab releases 13.10.3, 13.9.6, and 13.8.8.

The flaw exists because image files aren’t properly validated when passed to a file parser, which allows a remote attacker to achieve code execution on a vulnerable system.

In April, GitLab assessed the security error with a CVSS score of 9.9, but increased the score to 10 after revising it in September.

“The increase in score was the result of changing the vulnerability from an authenticated issue to an unauthenticated issue. Despite the tiny move in CVSS score, a change from authenticated to unauthenticated has big implications for defenders,” Rapid7’s security researchers explain.

Attackers have been actively targeting the vulnerability since June or July 2021 and exploitation is expected to increase as details of the unauthenticated nature of the bug become common knowledge.

Despite having a critical severity rating and being actively exploited in attacks, the vulnerability remains widely unpatched, the researchers say.

Out of roughly 60,000 GitLab servers that are accessible from the Internet, only 21% have been fully patched against the security flaw, while half remain unpatched to date. The remaining 29% may or may not be vulnerable.

“GitLab users should upgrade to the latest version of GitLab as soon as possible. In addition, ideally, GitLab should not be an internet facing service. If you need to access your GitLab from the internet, consider placing it behind a VPN,” Rapid7 notes.

Related: GitKraken Vulnerability Prompts Action From GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket

Related: GitLab Releases Open Source Tool for Hunting Malicious Code in Dependencies

Related: Researcher Earns $20,000 From GitLab for Critical Vulnerability

Written By

Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

Click to comment

Daily Briefing Newsletter

Subscribe to the SecurityWeek Email Briefing to stay informed on the latest threats, trends, and technology, along with insightful columns from industry experts.

Expert Insights

Related Content

Cloud Security

VMware vRealize Log Insight vulnerability allows an unauthenticated attacker to take full control of a target system.

IoT Security

Lexmark warns of a remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability impacting over 120 printer models, for which PoC code has been published.

Application Security

Drupal released updates that resolve four vulnerabilities in Drupal core and three plugins.

Mobile & Wireless

Apple rolled out iOS 16.3 and macOS Ventura 13.2 to cover serious security vulnerabilities.

Email Security

Microsoft is urging customers to install the latest Exchange Server updates and harden their environments to prevent malicious attacks.

Mobile & Wireless

Technical details published for an Arm Mali GPU flaw leading to arbitrary kernel code execution and root on Pixel 6.


Less than a week after announcing that it would suspended service indefinitely due to a conflict with an (at the time) unnamed security researcher...

Application Security

A CSRF vulnerability in the source control management (SCM) service Kudu could be exploited to achieve remote code execution in multiple Azure services.