The network specialist Netgear has discovered a serious security gap in a number of its routers and has corrected it with an update. The vulnerability makes remote code execution possible and should be patched urgently.
The security gap is therefore in the so-called Circle Parental Control Service, which runs with root rights on many modern Netgear routers for small offices and home offices. This service is activated by default, regardless of whether the user is using parental controls or not. This is now reported by the online magazine Bleeping Computer. The full list of Netgear routers susceptible to the CVE-2021-40847 vulnerability, as well as the patched firmware versions, is provided at the end of the post.
Netgear has identified the problem as a serious security issue. The vulnerability has now been disclosed under CVE-2021-40847. The GRIMM security researcher Adam Nichols explains how the security gap could be exploited: “The update process of the Circle Parental Control Service on various Netgear routers enables remote attackers with network access via a man-in-the-middle (MitM) – Attack RCE to gain root. “
Sensitive data at risk
To successfully exploit this vulnerability, attackers would have to modify or intercept network traffic while on the same network in order to obtain code execution as root on the targeted router. After gaining access, the attacker can take complete control of the network traffic. It can then potentially read encrypted data that is exchanged with other devices, including those on the victim’s corporate network.
Netgear has therefore made new firmware available for a number of routers. In a security warning, Netgear asked its customers to download and install the update as soon as possible.
- R6400v2 firmware version 188.8.131.52
- R6700 firmware version 184.108.40.206
- R6700v3 firmware version 220.127.116.11
- R6900 firmware version 18.104.22.168
- R6900P firmware version 3.3.142_HOTFIX
- R7000 firmware version 22.214.171.124
- R7000 firmware version 126.96.36.199_HOTFIX
- R7850 firmware version 188.8.131.52
- R7900 firmware version 184.108.40.206
- R8000 firmware version 220.127.116.11
- RS400 firmware version 18.104.22.168
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