[WEB SECURITY] Poll: How do you rank the importance of a vulnerability?

Paweł Krawczyk pawel.krawczyk at hush.com
Sat Feb 2 14:17:19 EST 2013


That’s theory. In practice you usually need to deal with hundreds of servers with tens of vulnerabilities on each. If you treat them all equally, you’ll get stuck forever  on fixing libtiff-type issues on the first one, and never touch remote exploits in SSH in  the others. That’s why it’s critical to have a way to prioritize these issues by their real risk. Once you’re done with remotes in SSH, you can move to libtiff.

 

From: Rohit Pitke [mailto:rohirp92 at yahoo.com] 
Sent: Friday, February 01, 2013 8:35 PM
To: pawel.krawczyk at hush.com; websecurity at lists.webappsec.org
Subject: Re: [WEB SECURITY] Poll: How do you rank the importance of a vulnerability?

 

I would go for worst case scenario considering the weakest link principle. Also proper threat modelling would be useful to determine scoring for specific vulnerability.  For enterprise level product with ideally no exposure to outside network, one might argue that libtiff issue might be of less severity but again it boils down to the context of application in analysis.

 

-Rohit

 

  _____  

From: Paweł Krawczyk < <mailto:pawel.krawczyk at hush.com> pawel.krawczyk at hush.com>
To:  <mailto:websecurity at lists.webappsec.org> websecurity at lists.webappsec.org 
Sent: Thursday, January 31, 2013 11:00 PM
Subject: Re: [WEB SECURITY] Poll: How do you rank the importance of a vulnerability?





CVSS is a large step in right direction, away from subjective 1-5 or Low-High scores, but I still have a large practical problem with how it's counted. CVSS has one issue that results in typical reports being flooded by mix of really important and less important vulnerabilities that will be difficult to distinguis even using CVSS subscores. For example consider these two examples: 


* remote bug in sshd 

* bug in libtiff 

Let's assume sshd is exploitable over network (AV=N). Let's assume libtiff can be exploited by someone who would need to open a malformed TIFF - but that would also have AV=N because it's assumed the file is delivered over network. This is at least how most of these vulns are classified in Qualys. 

 

Obviously, the real risk is completely different in each case - sshd just sits there and waits to be exploited, for libtiff you'd need a rather rare opportunity (someone opening TIFFs on server). 

 

I've once asked CVSS team about this and they replied that this should be theoretically captured by Access Complexity (AC) - for libtiff it AC=H (as you need to use social engineering for example), for sshd AC=L (just go and metasploit over network). 

 

But in real life scores of both vulns will be very similar. At the end of the day you end up with a report flooded by say 100 issues for each server, out of which usually all will be like that libtiff. And you have no way to filter them out to focus on sshd-type vulns because of how the classification is calculated. 

-- 
Paweł Krawczyk, CISSP
 <http://ipsec.pl> http://ipsec.pl  <http://echelon.pl> http://echelon.pl
+48 602 776959

On 1/2/2013 at 12:58 AM, "Robert A." < <mailto:robert at webappsec.org> robert at webappsec.org> wrote:

Where would you suggest this poll be held? Keep in mind I have no time to 
create or implement a polling application :)

- Robert

On Thu, 31 Jan 2013, MustLive wrote:

> Hello Robert!
>
> It's interesting poll and webappsec professionals and experts could be
> interested to participate in the poll. But you've selected not appropriate
> place for opening the poll.
>
> You've opened it in LinkedIn. That one, which was hacked last year. This is
> social network and none of social networks are attending to security. It's
> not the place for polls on web applications security topics ;-). Plus I'm
> not using LinkedIn and any s.networks at all (and the poll requires
> registration in it).
>
> P.S.
>
> I am agree with Phillip's standpoint.
>
> Best wishes & regards,
> Eugene Dokukin aka MustLive
> Administrator of Websecurity web site
>  <http://websecurity.com.ua> http://websecurity.com.ua
>
> Robert A. robert at  <http://webappsec.org/> webappsec.org
> Wed Jan 9 18:35:02 EST 2013
>
>> Greetings,
>> 
>> I've added a new poll to the WASC linkedin group that a few of you may be
>> interested in. Specifically asking how people rank the importance of
>> vulnerabilities.
>> 
>> Link
>>  <http://www.linkedin.com/groups/How-do-you-rank-importance-83336.S.202840840> http://www.linkedin.com/groups/How-do-you-rank-importance-83336.S.202840840
>> 
>> Regards,
>> Robert A.
>> WASC Co Founder/Moderator of The Web Security Mailing List
>>  <http://www.webappsec.org> http://www.webappsec.org.
>
>

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