You may have heard recent tech news regarding the Log4j vulnerability and be curious how it might affect your business or organization. Please read on to learn a bit more about what Log4j is, what the Log4j vulnerability is and does, and what steps are being taken to mitigate the issue.
In layman’s terms, log4k is a logging framework written in Java. It is used for tasks that are very common—to the point of being considered mundane by many. This includes items such as logging, debugging, and other tasks commonly occurring in website applications. Because Log4j is open source and the tasks it performs are fundamental to testing and maintaining websites, it is very common in use and applied in thousands of webpage uses every day. This makes the vulnerability particularly dangerous.
The basic premise of the Log4j vulnerability is that a set of characters were discovered to execute code on the host machine when data was sent to the website in a particular manner. Known as remote code execution, or RCE, exploiting the Log4j vulnerability can essentially result in a bad actor being able to execute files and scripts on the affected machine which can lead to almost any outcome desired—data theft, malware execution (to include ransomware), and the like. A more technical explanation is available via the Huntress post on the Log4j vulnerability.
Recent versions of Log4j have addressed the vulnerability, although new vulnerabilities continue to be discovered and patched. In other words, as of this writing, discovery and fixes are on-going.
Unsurprisingly, malicious actors and organizations are busy trying to discover unpatched instances of this logging framework. In the aforementioned post, Huntress describes the issue as follows:
Because of its large attack surface and the innate severity of remote code execution, security researchers are notably calling this a “shellshock” vulnerability. All threat actors need to trigger an attack is one line of text. There’s no obvious target for this vulnerability—hackers are taking a spray-and-pray approach to wreak havoc.
After verifying with our software partners, we are happy to report that no issues have been identified internally and no action is required on our end to protect our and our clients’ systems. However, with these situations it is important to remain vigilant as the situation progresses.
Not sure if your business or organization are vulnerable? GET IN TOUCH and our team of security experts can assist!