Vulnerabilities found in Citrix and Pulse Secure products

Enterprise infosec teams are being warned to take action on serious vulnerabilities in products from Citrix and VPN manufacturer Pulse Secure.

First, about Citrix: According to The Hacker News, on Saturday multiple groups publicly released weaponized proof-of-concept exploit code for remote code execution vulnerabilities disclosed Dec. 17 in Citrix’s application delivery controller and Gateway products. These bugs could be leveraged to take full control over potential enterprise targets.

The company said a vulnerability was found in Citrix Application Delivery Controller (ADC), formerly known as NetScaler ADC, and Citrix Gateway, formerly known as NetScaler Gateway.

The vulnerability, called CVE-2019-19781, affects all supported product versions and all supported platforms including Citrix ADC and Citrix Gateway version 13.0 all supported builds; Citrix ADC and NetScaler Gateway version 12.1 all supported builds; Citrix ADC and NetScaler Gateway version 12.0 all supported builds; Citrix ADC and NetScaler Gateway version 11.1 all supported builds, and Citrix NetScaler ADC and NetScaler Gateway version 10.5 all supported builds.

There is no patch yet for this bug. Instead, infosec pros have to apply these mitigations until new firmware is released for various versions starting January 20.

Threat intelligence firm Bad Packets said that as of Saturday its scans found a total of 25,121 unique IPv4 hosts worldwide vulnerable to CVE-2019-19781. Of these, some 9,880 were in the U.S. and 682 were in Canada.

Meanwhile, on Friday the U.S. Department of Homeland Security warned that unpatched Pulse Secure VPN servers “continue to be an attractive target for malicious actors” although the company has been telling customers to install a patch for the past eight months.

The patch fixes a code execution (RCE) vulnerability known as CVE-2019-11510. If exploited a remote, unauthenticated attacker may be able to compromise a vulnerable VPN server. The DHS notice said an attacker may be able to gain access to all active users and their plain-text credentials. It may also be possible for the attacker to execute arbitrary commands on each VPN client as it successfully connects to the VPN server.

Affected versions include Pulse Connect Secure 9.0R1 – 9.0R3.3; Pulse Connect Secure 8.3R1 – 8.3R7; Pulse Connect Secure 8.2R1 – 8.2R12; Pulse Connect Secure 8.1R1 – 8.1R15;  Pulse Policy Secure 9.0R1 – 9.0R3.1; Pulse Policy Secure 5.4R1 – 5.4R7; Pulse Policy Secure 5.3R1 – 5.3R12; Pulse Policy Secure 5.2R1 – 5.2R12; and Pulse Policy Secure 5.1R1 – 5.1R15.

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Howard Solomon
Howard Solomon
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for several of ITWC's sister publications including and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times. I can be reached at hsolomon [@]

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