In April, Sapphire threat intelligence resources identified a sophisticated ransomware campaign utilising the Cring malware and leveraging vulnerability (CVE-2018-13379), identified in 2019 affecting Fortinet VPN Servers. This allows a threat actor to connect to the VPN appliance with no authentication and download session files containing usernames and passwords in clear text. Though this vulnerability has had a patch available since it was discovered, a list of known public-facing devices that were still vulnerable began to circulate around dark web forums in late 2020. The primary target of these attacks has been industrial enterprises located throughout Europe, with at least one resulting in the temporary closure of a production site.

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To protect your business from hackers, it is essential to know what level of risk your business is at. It must then be decided whether a penetration test or a vulnerability assessment is appropriate for you. It is important to know the difference between the two and the varying levels of security that they provide against the threat that hackers pose. Of course, both vulnerability assessments and penetration testing should be carried out regularly as part of your cyber security programme as both testing methods have their unique benefits.

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Cisco has publicly disclosed several critical vulnerabilities affecting their Software Defined WAN (SD-WAN) products. A total of eight vulnerabilities were revealed. Each were identified with a CVSS rating of 9.6 or more, indicating a critical vulnerability which required immediate remediation.

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In September 2020 details of a critical vulnerability known as ‘ZeroLogon’ were published. This vulnerability affects Windows NetLogon processes and referenced as CVE-2020-1472. The publication coincided with the August 2020 Windows Security Update release, which addressed this vulnerability before it became widely known and distributed among threat actors. Since its announcement, proof-of-concept exploits have been detected, and a module for exploiting CVE-2020-1472 has been added into the Metasploit framework.

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On the 12th of January 2021, Microsoft released the first cumulative patch of the new year, with eighty-three security vulnerabilities rectified across a range of Microsoft products. The most significant of these fixes related to a zero-day vulnerability within Microsoft Defender, the integrated anti-virus of Windows operating systems.

This vulnerability is being tracked and identified as CVE-2021-1647 and described as a Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerability allowing threat actors to infect target systems with executable code.

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