Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

Summary: Cisco warns that some warranty CD-ROMs contain a malicious surprise.

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TOPICS: Security, Cisco, Malware
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Cisco has shipped warranty CDs with links to a third-party website known to be a malware repository.

In an advisory, the switching and routing company said the infected CD-ROMs were shipped between the period of December 2010 until August 2011.

"When the CD is opened with a web browser, it automatically and without warning accesses this third-party website. Additionally, on computers where the operating system is configured to automatically open inserted media, the computer's default web browser will access the third-party site when the CD is inserted, without requiring any further action by the user," Cisco warned.

Cisco downplayed the direct risk to end users:follow Ryan Naraine on twitter

To the best of our knowledge, starting from December 2010 until the time of this document's publication on August 3, 2011, customers were never in a position to have their computer compromised by using the CDs provided by Cisco. Additionally, the third-party site in question is currently inactive as a malware repository, so customers are not in immediate danger of having their computers compromised. However, if this third-party web site would become active as a malware repository again, there is a potential that users could infect their operating system by opening the CD with their web browser.

The advisory contains a list of CDs affected by this incident.

Topics: Security, Cisco, Malware

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7 comments
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  • RE: Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

    I have no CDs from Cisco however yes there are companies, you purchase program from them and are loaded with advertisement and are install un to you computer then you need spend days cleaning crap off which it should be illegal!!!
    Tony4
    • RE: Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

      @Tony4 Could you repeat that in English?
      frizzllefry
  • RE: Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

    Questions that came to mind...
    I'm not a big corp. and have never bought Cisco software but are you saying that the Warranty comes on a CD and not in written form, like every other warranty I've ever seen? What is it, someone standing there reading the warranty? I don't understand this???
    Secondly, it sure would be interesting to know what company(s) were involved in producing the CDs and what country(s) they are located in....
    To me, it seems totally incomprehensible that a giant like Cisco, in this day and age of the 'cyberwar era', has such poor quality control that they were ever distributed in the first place...(some heads should roll) and not to find out about it until 9 mos. later after they were released...geez...that's pretty bad.
    scudrunner
    • RE: Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

      @scudrunner
      Yes warranty info, most likely the CD's created by a third party. If the third party did not catch most likely a customer reported the issue.
      daikon
  • RE: Cisco warranty CDs send users to malicious web site

    The author failed to research the most obvious question. HOW did the malware get on to the disks (or isn't Cisco saying)?
    omb00900
  • Design safety failures take forever to get patched

    In theory, I'd hope by now that systems no longer automatically ran code (or followed links) from inserted disks. In practice, XP may keep this alive?

    When code is exploited to do something unintended, the defect tends to get patched. But when an unsafe design poses similar risks, it's usually not fixed because it "works as designed". It can take years of mass exploits, including destructive payloads, before it's fixed.

    Examples abound; auto-running macros in "documents", auto-running scripts in HTML "message text", auto-running optical and USB storage, hiding the only unspoofable indication of a file's type, etc.

    Some of these persist to this day.
    cquirke
  • Par for the Ciscourse.

    Given the quality control of the last (and I mean last both as in "I'll never buy another Cisco product, too) "Cisco" router I purchased - which turned out to be a Linksys work of art in a shiny white case with a darling Cisco logo, a fatal bug in the BIOS, and no available support - learning that their exemplary quality control extends to yet another facet of their business surprises me not at all.

    And the downplaying of the issue reprinted above is worthy of any politician.

    When one aspect of a business is reminiscent of a troupe of monkeys interacting with a football it's hardly surprising when you learn that others are too.
    ghastly