Cisco Security Advisory
Cisco IOS and IOS XE Software Network-Based Application Recognition Denial of Service Vulnerabilities
Multiple vulnerabilities in the Network-Based Application Recognition (NBAR) feature of Cisco IOS Software and Cisco IOS XE Software could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to cause an affected device to reload. These vulnerabilities are due to a parsing issue on DNS packets. An attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities by sending crafted DNS packets through routers that are running an affected version and have NBAR enabled. A successful exploit could allow the attacker to cause the affected device to reload, resulting in a denial of service (DoS) condition.
Cisco has released software updates that address these vulnerabilities. There are no workarounds that address these vulnerabilities.
This advisory is available at the following link:
This advisory is part of the March 27, 2019, release of the Cisco IOS and IOS XE Software Security Advisory Bundled Publication, which includes 17 Cisco Security Advisories that describe 19 vulnerabilities. For a complete list of the advisories and links to them, see Cisco Event Response: March 2019 Semiannual Cisco IOS and IOS XE Software Security Advisory Bundled Publication.
These vulnerabilities affect routers that are running vulnerable releases of Cisco IOS or IOS XE Software and have been configured for NBAR operations.
For information about which Cisco IOS and IOS XE Software releases are vulnerable, see the Fixed Software section of this advisory.
Determining the NBAR Configuration
Administrators can verify whether NBAR is in use on a device by verifying that the "show ip nbar control-plane | include NBAR state" CLI command reports the state as "ACTIVATED". If that command does not produce output, or it reports the state as "DEACTIVATED" then NBAR operation is not configured.
Here is an example of a device on which NBAR is enabled:
Router#show ip nbar control-plane | include NBAR state
NBAR state is ACTIVATED
NBAR state: ACTIVATED
Here is an example of a device on which NBAR is disabled:
Router#show ip nbar control-plane | include NBAR state
NBAR state is DEACTIVATED
NBAR state: DEACTIVATED
Determining the Cisco IOS Software Release
To determine which Cisco IOS Software release is running on a device, administrators can log in to the device, use the show version command in the CLI, and then refer to the system banner that appears. If the device is running Cisco IOS Software, the system banner displays text similar to Cisco Internetwork Operating System Software or Cisco IOS Software. The banner also displays the installed image name in parentheses, followed by the Cisco IOS Software release number and release name. Some Cisco devices do not support the show version command or may provide different output.
The following example shows the output of the command for a device that is running Cisco IOS Software Release 15.5(2)T1 and has an installed image name of C2951-UNIVERSALK9-M:
Router> show version Cisco IOS Software, C2951 Software (C2951-UNIVERSALK9-M), Version 15.5(2)T1, RELEASE SOFTWARE (fc1) Technical Support: http://www.cisco.com/techsupport Copyright (c) 1986-2015 by Cisco Systems, Inc. Compiled Mon 22-Jun-15 09:32 by prod_rel_team . . .
For information about the naming and numbering conventions for Cisco IOS Software releases, see the Cisco IOS and NX-OS Software Reference Guide.
Determining the Cisco IOS XE Software Release
To determine which Cisco IOS XE Software release is running on a device, administrators can log in to the device, use the show version command in the CLI, and then refer to the system banner that appears. If the device is running Cisco IOS XE Software, the system banner displays Cisco IOS Software, Cisco IOS XE Software, or similar text.
The following example shows the output of the command for a device that is running Cisco IOS XE Software Release 16.2.1 and has an installed image name of CAT3K_CAA-UNIVERSALK9-M:
ios-xe-device# show version Cisco IOS Software, Catalyst L3 Switch Software (CAT3K_CAA-UNIVERSALK9-M), Version Denali 16.2.1, RELEASE SOFTWARE (fc1) Technical Support: http://www.cisco.com/techsupport Copyright (c) 1986-2016 by Cisco Systems, Inc. Compiled Sun 27-Mar-16 21:47 by mcpre . . .
For information about the naming and numbering conventions for Cisco IOS XE Software releases, see the Cisco IOS and NX-OS Software Reference Guide.
Products Confirmed Not Vulnerable
Only products listed in the Vulnerable Products section of this advisory are known to be affected by these vulnerabilities.Cisco has confirmed that these vulnerabilities do not affect Cisco IOS XR Software or Cisco NX-OS Software.
A successful exploit of these vulnerabilities will cause an affected device to reload and generate a crashinfo file.
A successful exploit of these vulnerabilities may be confirmed by decoding the stack trace for the device and determining whether the stack trace correlates with these vulnerabilities.
Contact the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) to review the crashinfo file and determine whether the device has been compromised by exploitation of these vulnerabilities.
Cisco has released free software updates that address the vulnerabilities described in this advisory. Customers may only install and expect support for software versions and feature sets for which they have purchased a license. By installing, downloading, accessing, or otherwise using such software upgrades, customers agree to follow the terms of the Cisco software license:
Additionally, customers may only download software for which they have a valid license, procured from Cisco directly, or through a Cisco authorized reseller or partner. In most cases this will be a maintenance upgrade to software that was previously purchased. Free security software updates do not entitle customers to a new software license, additional software feature sets, or major revision upgrades.
When considering software upgrades, customers are advised to regularly consult the advisories for Cisco products, which are available from the Cisco Security Advisories and Alerts page, to determine exposure and a complete upgrade solution.
In all cases, customers should ensure that the devices to be upgraded contain sufficient memory and confirm that current hardware and software configurations will continue to be supported properly by the new release. If the information is not clear, customers are advised to contact the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) or their contracted maintenance providers.
Customers Without Service Contracts
Customers who purchase directly from Cisco but do not hold a Cisco service contract and customers who make purchases through third-party vendors but are unsuccessful in obtaining fixed software through their point of sale should obtain upgrades by contacting the Cisco TAC:
Customers should have the product serial number available and be prepared to provide the URL of this advisory as evidence of entitlement to a free upgrade.
Cisco IOS and IOS XE Software
To help customers determine their exposure to vulnerabilities in Cisco IOS and IOS XE Software, Cisco provides a tool, the Cisco IOS Software Checker, that identifies any Cisco Security Advisories that impact a specific software release and the earliest release that fixes the vulnerabilities described in each advisory (“First Fixed”). If applicable, the tool also returns the earliest release that fixes all the vulnerabilities described in all the advisories identified (“Combined First Fixed”).
Customers can use this tool to perform the following tasks:
- Initiate a search by choosing one or more releases from a drop-down list or uploading a file from a local system for the tool to parse
- Enter the output of the show version command for the tool to parse
- Create a custom search by including all previously published Cisco Security Advisories, a specific advisory, or all advisories in the most recent bundled publication
To determine whether a release is affected by any published Cisco Security Advisory, use the Cisco IOS Software Checker on Cisco.com or enter a Cisco IOS or IOS XE Software release-for example, 15.1(4)M2 or 3.13.8S-in the following field:
By default, the Cisco IOS Software Checker includes results only for vulnerabilities that have a Critical or High Security Impact Rating (SIR). To include results for Medium SIR vulnerabilities, use the Cisco IOS Software Checker on Cisco.com and check the Medium check box in the Impact Rating drop-down list.
For a mapping of Cisco IOS XE Software releases to Cisco IOS Software releases, refer to the Cisco IOS XE 2 Release Notes, Cisco IOS XE 3S Release Notes, or Cisco IOS XE 3SG Release Notes, depending on the Cisco IOS XE Software release.Note: Starting with Cisco IOS XE Software Release 16.9.1, any upgrade will require Smart Licensing. Customers who plan to upgrade Cisco IOS XE to Release 16.9.1 or later are advised to consider the Smart Licensing requirement. The following documentation provides additional information: Smart Licensing.
The Cisco Product Security Incident Response Team (PSIRT) is not aware of any public announcements or malicious use of the vulnerabilities that are described in this advisory.
These vulnerabilities were discovered during the resolution of a support case.
To learn about Cisco security vulnerability disclosure policies and publications, see the Security Vulnerability Policy. This document also contains instructions for obtaining fixed software and receiving security vulnerability information from Cisco.
Version Description Section Status Date 1.0 Initial public release. - Final 2019-March-27
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