Vulnerabilities up 40% over 3 Months

Thursday, December 11, 2014 @ 03:12 PM gHale

The number of vulnerabilities increased by 40 percent over the August through October time frame this year over last year with 1,841 flaws uncovered over the three-month period, a new report said.

The largest number of security bugs disclosed was in Google Chrome: 64 in August, 17 in September, and 162 in October, according to the report by vulnerability intelligence company Secunia.

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In August, there were numerous vulnerabilities in Oracle Solaris (58), EMC RSA Archer GRC (41), and various IBM products. In September, Apple’s OS X topped the chart with 59 flaws, followed by VMware Center Server (43), Internet Explorer (38), VMware vSphere Update Manager (37), and Adobe Flash Player (24). In October, Chrome led, followed by the Avant Browser (159) and iTunes (83).

In the three-month period covered in the report, the vendor with the most vulnerable products was IBM. This is largely due to the fact the company’s products end up bundled with third-party software such as Java and OpenSSL.

“That these programs are bundled within the individual IBM product means that every single time a vulnerability is discovered and a patch released for e.g. Java, the corresponding IBM products needs to be updated, too. First by IBM, and then by all IBM customers,” Secunia said in its report. “Anyone running IBM products knows that in the weeks and months following an Oracle Patch Day, they need to get busy patching their IBM applications. All in all, a very time consuming process.”

The report also highlights the relation between publicity and patches. Shortly after the existence of the OpenSSL bug known as Heartbleed came to light, 100 vendors released patches for 600 affected products within 40 days. Two months later, another series of OpenSSL flaws disclosed and vendors once again rushed to patch their solutions. In the following weeks, other OpenSSL vulnerabilities hit 200 products, but security updates did not go out for quite a few of them.

“When Take 3 happened, the media had lost interest – and with the hype gone, less than 20 vendors took the time to disclose and patch some 50 products. 100 days in, the number of affected products is at 75. Consequently, not only are there products that are vulnerable and unpatched because of ‘OpenSSL Take 3’, but they are also undisclosed. And that is really bad!” Secunia said.

Click here to download Secunia’s Vulnerability Update.

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