back to article Whisk-y business: How Apache OpenWhisk hole left IBM Cloud Functions at risk of hijacking

IBM has patched a critical vulnerability in its Cloud Functions platform that would have allowed miscreants to remotely overwrite customers' code – and execute malicious commands to hijack services. The flaws, designated CVE-2018-11756 and CVE-2018-11757, are actually present in Apache OpenWhisk, a component Big Blue uses to …

  1. Alistair Silver badge

    http call, can call init. can wipe and reload the container.

    That is a rather open wisk. Someone should pwug it.

  2. Martin M

    The article reads as if the illustrative REST call could be remotely executed. Having had a look at the PDF written by PureSec, that doesn’t appear to be the case - the endpoint is apparently only locally accessible to the container itself and the OpenWhisk management system (hopefully not neighbouring functions!). So it’s necessary to exploit an application-level weakness already present in the the function to do the POST to /init. Definitely good that it’s now made immutable after first invocation to prevent trivial escalations, but in many cases if the application has a vulnerability that can be abused to make it do arbitrary POSTs, it may be game over anyway.

    The *real* eye-opener for me is their PoC. This constructs a hopelessly insecure function with a command injection vulnerability, then shows how that command injection flaw can be used to apt-get install curl and execute it to do a local POST to the /init endpoint.

    WTF? Why on earth would an application function need to be apparently running as root and able to do apt-get install inside its container? That appears unpatched, and seems to be at least as fundamental as the /init thing.

  3. veti Silver badge

    The truly appalling thing about this story

    is that, in the stock photo, someone has put ice in the whisky.

    Dear El Reg: you're British, you should know better than that. Ice in whiskey? OK, if you like. Ice in whisky? - awa' wi' ye, heathen.

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