Critical Security Flaws in VMware vCenter Server Addressed: Immediate Patching Urged

June 18, 2024

VMware has put out a security advisory detailing critical vulnerabilities in its vCenter Server, which includes remote code execution and local privilege escalation flaws.

vCenter Server is a central management platform for VMware vSphere, which facilitates the management of virtual machines and ESXi hosts. The company has now released patches for three vulnerabilities: CVE-2024-37079, CVE-2024-37080, and CVE-2024-37081.

These vulnerabilities affect VMware vCenter Server versions 7.0 and 8.0, as well as VMware Cloud Foundation versions 4.x and 5.x. The security updates have been made accessible in VMware vCenter Server 8.0 U2d, 8.0 U1e, and 7.0 U3r. For Cloud Foundation, patches were disseminated through KB88287.

According to VMware, updating the vCenter Server will not disrupt running workloads or VMs. However, a temporary unavailability of vSphere Client and other management interfaces is expected during the update process. A separate issue with custom ciphers was identified in 7.0 U3r (also in U3q). VMware recommends a precheck to identify the issue, and users can also refer to the relevant knowledge base article.

The company has clarified that there are no viable in-product workarounds or mitigations for these vulnerabilities. Therefore, the suggested solution is to apply the updates as soon as possible.

VMware has also published a FAQ page alongside the security bulletin. The company confirmed that no active exploitation of these flaws has been detected in the wild so far. However, it is not unusual for vCenter vulnerabilities to be exploited by threat actors once they are disclosed. Therefore, administrators are strongly advised to apply the updates immediately.

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