DB2 Crack Lets in Attackers Without Database Credentials

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 06-12-2006

Security researchers have uncovered a critical client/server protocol flaw in IBM's DB2 database.

Imperva's Application Defense Center reported on June 12 that it had discovered the vulnerability—which allows any attacker with network access to the database server to bring it down or to run arbitrary code—in DB2 Version 8.

The flaw's severity is magnified by the fact that an attacker doesn't need database credentials to exploit the weakness, according to Imperva.

Also, due to the fact that this is a network-level flaw, attacks slip by DB2's built-in auditing mechanism.

When requested for comment on the flaw, IBM took the opportunity to thumb its nose at archrival Oracle, whose "Unbreakable" slogan and slow patch times have gotten it into sticky PR situations in the past few years.

"IBM realizes that it is unrealistic to claim that any database is 'unbreakable' and that code—by its very nature—may contain some flaws," IBM engineers relayed in a statement e-mailed by a spokesperson.

"This is why the IBM development teams are continually working with various security entities throughout the industry to evaluate our code and detect any potential problems," IBM's statement continues. "Our engineers then work to quickly address any problems with an immediate patch rather than leaving our customers exposed until the next scheduled Fixpack release."

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