Oxeye has announced the discovery of a serious vm2 vulnerability that has received the maximum CVSS score of 10.0 with the following CVE (CVE-2022-36067). Called SandBreak and detailed on the Oxeye blog, this new vulnerability requires R&D leaders, AppSec engineers, and security professionals to ensure they immediately patch the vm2 sandbox if they use it in their applications.
The Oxeye research team found a critical sandbox escape vulnerability that leads to remote code execution in vm2. The vulnerability was disclosed to the project owners and was rapidly patched in version 3.9.11. GitHub issued advisory CVE-2022-36067 for this vulnerability and gave it a CVSS score of 10, putting AppSec professionals, developers, and others on alert.
A threat actor who exploits this vulnerability will be able to bypass the vm2 sandbox environment and run shell commands on the machine hosting it. Sandboxes serve different purposes in modern applications, such as examining attached files in email servers, providing an additional security layer in web browsers, or isolating actively running applications in certain operating systems. Given the nature of the use cases for sandboxes, it’s clear that the vm2 vulnerability can have dire consequences for applications that use vm2 without patching. The fact that this vulnerability has the maximum CVSS score of 10.0 and is extremely popular means its potential impact is widespread and critical.
According to Gal Goldshtein, Senior Security Researcher at Oxeye, “Our usual approach when evaluating a given software’s security is first to analyze the previous security lapses discovered in the same software. This helps us better grasp the available attack surface and may also lead to low-hanging bugs stemming from incomplete fixes. It also helps us come up with techniques to bypass the implemented fixes. While reviewing the previous bugs disclosed to the vm2 maintainers, we noticed an interesting technique: the bug reporter abused the error mechanism in Node.js to escape the sandbox.”
Yuval Ostrovsky, Architect at Oxeye added that “Although sandboxes are meant to run untrusted code within your application, you shouldn’t automatically assume that they are safe. If the use of a sandbox is unavoidable, it is recommended to separate the logical sensitive part of your application from the microservice that runs the sandbox code so if a threat actor successfully breaks out from the sandbox, the attack surface is limited to the isolated microservice.”
“We make vulnerability insights smarter by differentiating which dependencies in the application are merely installed and which are actually loaded and used by the application,” said Daniel Abeles, Head of Research at Oxeye. “This allows us to rank the severity of vulnerable packages, such as the vm2 package, within the application in order to help focus on remediation efforts that address the most important vulnerabilities first. We are helping to cancel noise in application security.”