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Black Hat

Next week a half of SAP systems, available in Internet, can be hacked

On the 4th of august at the world largest technical security conference - BlackHat USA 2011, which will take place in Las Vegas, SAP security expert and CTO of ERPScan Alexander Polyakov will show how any malicious attacker can get access to the systems running on SAP via Internet using new critical vulnerability.

SAP systems are used in more than 100 000 world companies to handle business-critical data and processes. Almost in each company from Forbes 500 system data are set for the handling of any process beginning from purchasing, human resources and financial reporting and ending with communication with other business systems. Thus receiving an access by the malicious attacker leads to complete control over the financial flow of the company, which can be used for espionage, sabotage and fraudful actions against hacked company.

The given attack is possible due to dangerous vulnerability of the new type, detected by Alexander in J2EE engine of SAP NetWeaver software, which allows bypassing authorization checks. For example it is possible to create a user and assign him to the administrators group using two unauthorized requests to the system. It is also dangerous because that attack is possible on systems, protected by the two-factor authentication systems, in which it is needed to know secret key and password to get access. To prove it researchers from ERPScan created a program, which detects SAP servers in the Internet with help of secret Google keyword and checks found servers on potential dangerous vulnerability. As the result, more than half of available servers could be hacked with help of found vulnerability.

“Danger is in that it is not only a new vulnerability, but a whole class of vulnerabilities that was theoretically described earlier but not popular in practice. During our research we only detected several examples in standard system configuration, and because each company customizes the system under its own business processes, new examples of vulnerabilities of the given class can be potentially detected at each company in the future. We have developed a free program which can detect unique vulnerabilities of such type in order to protect companies on time and it is also included in our professional product – ERPScan Security Scanner for SAP.” — noted Alexander.