Zero-day vulnerability in Microsoft Internet Explorer

Use-after-free error

This vulnerability was described by Eric Romang and FireEye through Malware Protection Cloud.

The vulnerability has been exploited in watering hole attacks against Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) website 26.12.2012. The attack appears to be closely related to attacks in June 2012 that were targeting visitors of a major hotel chain and other attacks associated with the Elderwood Project.

Vulnerability details

Advisory: SB2012122901 - Remote code execution in Microsoft Internet Explorer

Vulnerable component: Microsoft Internet Explorer

CVE-ID: CVE-2012-4792

CVSSv3 score: CVSS:3.1/AV:N/AC:L/PR:N/UI:R/S:C/C:H/I:H/A:H/E:H/RL:O/RC:C

CWE-ID: CWE-416 - Use After Free


The vulnerability allows a remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on the target system.

The weakness exists due to use-after-free error when handling the CDwnBindInfo object and attempting to access an object in memory that has not been initialized or has been deleted. A remote attacker can create a specially crafted Web site, trick the victim into visiting it, trigger memory corruption and execute arbitrary code on the system with privileges of the current user.

Successful exploitation of the vulnerability results in arbitrary code execution on the vulnerable system.

Note: the vulnerability was being actively exploited.

Known APT campaigns:

Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) breach

The attack was performed on 26.12.2012. Chinese hackers are suspected to deliver Trojan Gh0st RAT on victim's computers.

Operation Aurora

Operation Aurora is a series of cyber attacks conducted since mid-2009. Such name was given by Dmitri Alperovitch of McAfee.

The operation was discovered by Google in January, 2010 and is considered to have Chinese origin.

The hackers targeted not only Google but also Yahoo, Symantec, Juniper Networks, Adobe, Northrop Grumman ╨╕ Dow Chemical.

Symantec identified the group behind the operation "Elderwood", Dell Secureworks - "Beijing Group".

Public Exploits: