New attacks on Java 6 surface, but don’t expect a patch unless you pay Oracle

Hackers are using a new exploit for a bug in Java 6 to attack victims, but don’t expect a patch any time soon -- unless you decide to pay Oracle for long term Java support.

Now is probably a good time for nearly anyone still running Java 6 to uninstall Java or upgrade to Java 7, according to F-Secure security analyst Timo Hirvonen, who warned on Monday that hackers were exploiting the flaw CVE-2013-2463 in Java 6.

A new round of attacks on Java 6 in web browsers follow a proof of concept (PoC) exploit for the flaw that was published last week, according to Hirvonen.

“PoC for CVE-2013-2463 was released last week, now it's exploited in the wild. No patch for JRE6... Uninstall or upgrade to JRE7 update 25,” Hirvonen tweeted.

In a later tweet, he noted that the exploit was integrated into the Neutrino exploit kit -- one of dozens of kits for sale that bundle exploits for bugs in popular software to net victims.

Hirvonen’s advice to either upgrade to the latest Java 7 or uninstall Java (if the person is running Java 6) is based on Oracle’s decision not to release new security updates for Java 6 to the public after moving it to “end of public updates” status this April.

Like many of the 40 Java flaws that Oracle acknowledged in its June update, the bug being exploited by Neutrino actually affected Java 7 Update 21 (and earlier) as well as Java 6 Update 45 (and earlier), and was also exploitable via the Java browser plugin.

But while anyone using Java 7 could move to Java 7 Update 25, only customers paying Oracle for long term Java support can access and install Java 6 Update 51 -- the latest Java 6 update.

Enterprise customers on “premium support” can expect Java 6 updates through to December this year, while Oracle’s “Extended Support” customers will receive updates to December 2016 and “Sustaining Support” customers can expect updates indefinitely.

As for the exploit kit Neutrino, CVE-2013-2463 is likely useful because it can, as a new exploit, avoid setting off alarms in antivirus products, at least in the short term.

According to independent security researcher Kafeine, the exploit for CVE-2013-2463 now bundled in Neutrino replaced an exploit for the Java bug CVE-2013-2465, which Oracle also released Java 6 (for some) and 7 (for all) patches for in its June update.

Microsoft may head into similar territory as it heads toward the end of Windows XP security updates for the public from April 8, 2014. Microsoft will continue to provide critical patches for Windows XP but they will be restricted to customers on its “Custom Support” contract.

Follow @CSO_Australia and sign up to the CSO Australia newsletter.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Java 6hackingOracle

More about CSOCustomF-SecureMicrosoftOracle

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by Liam Tung

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    IDG Live Webinar:The right collaboration strategy will help your business take flight

    Speakers - Mike Harris, Engineering Services Manager, Jetstar - Christopher Johnson, IT Director APAC, 20th Century Fox - Brent Maxwell, Director of Information Systems, THE ICONIC - IDG MC/Moderator Anthony Caruana

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place