ICS-CERT: Windows Remote Desktop Protocol Vulnerability

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Infosec Island Admin


ICS-CERT is aware of a public report of a Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) vulnerability with proof-of-concept (PoC) exploit code affecting multiple Microsoft Windows operating systems.

RDP is a proprietary protocol developed by Microsoft, which provides a user with a graphical interface to another computer. In a control system environment, this protocol is typically used for remote access.

Security researcher Luigi Auriemma coordinated the release of this information through the Zero Day Initiative (ZDI). Microsoft has issued a patch for this vulnerability that is available on their update website or automatically if automatic updates are turned on in a system.

Though this report is not industrial control system (ICS)-specific, the results of successfully exploiting this vulnerability are far reaching into the ICS environment.


For a list of all affected Microsoft products, please visit the Microsoft Security Bulletin:


Successful exploitation of this vulnerability in the control systems environment could lead to system processes freezing and potentially allow remote code execution.

Impact to individual organizations depends on many factors that are unique to each organization. ICS-CERT recommends that organizations evaluate the impact of this vulnerability based on their operational environment, architecture, and product implementation.


The vulnerable RDP implementation does not properly process packets in memory, which allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code by sending a sequence of specially crafted RDP packets to Port 3389/TCP. CVE-2012-0002 has been assigned to this vulnerability. According to ZDI, a CVSS V2 base score of 10.0 has also been assigned.

EXPLOITABILITY: This vulnerability is remotely exploitable.

EXISTENCE OF EXPLOIT: Public exploits are known to target this vulnerability.

DIFFICULTY: An attacker with a low skill level would be able to exploit this vulnerability.

The full ICS-CERT advisory can be found here:

Source:  http://www.us-cert.gov/control_systems/pdf/ICSA-12-079-01.pdf

Possibly Related Articles:
Industrial Control Systems
Microsoft SCADA Windows Vulnerabilities Advisory ICS ICS-CERT Remote Desktop Protocol Industrial Control Systems
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