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Protect your business against GHOST vulnerability

By Thomas Costello - January 28, 2015

Cloud security company Qualys has reported that their research team have discovered a major security hole GHOST (CVE-2015-0235), in the Linux GNU C Library (glibc). It has been reported that this vulnerability enables hackers to remotely take control of systems without knowing any system IDs or passwords.

What is the Ghost vulnerability?

The Ghost vulnerability is an exploit that can be used by an attacker to take command of a system. Instead of attacking the library directly, the Ghost exploit uses functions found in glibc. This is the standardised library of functions written in the C and C++ languages which are used at the base of most common tasks.

Ultimately this security vulnerability allows attackers to take control of another’s system without having the security credentials for that particular system.

Where has this come from?

Reports that have emerged today claim that the vulnerability first appeared in glibc back in 2000. This was then fixed in 2013 but as it was not classed as security vulnerability; many long term Linux distributions were not immediately modified.

So what is it? Is this threat real?

123-reg takes security vulnerabilities of this kind very seriously and we have taken all appropriate measures to make sure that our customers’ services are secure.

What are we doing to protect you and your business?

123-reg has and continues to take security procedures to protect our own infrastructure. Since we were made aware of the security hole, our security teams have worked to patch, where required, all 123-reg infrastructures including our hosting and email environments. So, if you have a server with us that we manage, you are protected.

However, if you have a server with 123-reg that you manage, you will need to patch it yourself. It is vitally important that you update your system as soon as possible.

How to patch against this vulnerability?

Those in-support OS’s can patch with:

  • Ubuntu: sudo apt-get update ; sudo apt-get upgrade
  • CentOS: sudo yum update ; sudo yum upgrade

This will patch the server and any other components that need updating / patching.

  • Ubuntu: sudo apt-get update ; sudo apt-get glibc*
  • CentOS: sudo yum update ; sudo yum install glibc*

Following the patch, a reboot is required

123-reg is committed to providing a highly secure environment for its customers. If you have further questions, please get in contact and a member of the Customer Support Team will be happy to assist.