Citrix in a Fix: When Cybersecurity Turns into a Comedy of Errors

Despite the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s stern warnings, the CitrixBleed vulnerability is partying like it’s 1999. With a guest list including the notorious LockBit and a venue as appealing as unpatched software, this shindig is causing quite a stir. And while a patch is available, the application seems as sluggish as a hungover party-goer.

Hot Take:

Oh Citrix, we thought you were the safe haven for remote workers, but alas! The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is playing the strict parent, urging organizations to patch up and report any misbehavior. Meanwhile, CitrixBleed is throwing a wild party, inviting all sorts of undesirables from session hijackers to the notorious LockBit. Despite the availability of a band-aid (read: patch), the wound seems to be festering. If only cybersecurity was as simple as “patch and chill.”

Key Points:

  • CitrixBleed vulnerability in Citrix NetScaler ADC and NetScaler Gateway is being actively and specifically exploited, leading to session hijacking and other threat activity.
  • Despite a patch being available since October 10, exploitation of the vulnerability has intensified.
  • The threat group LockBit is potentially involved in exploiting CitrixBleed.
  • Boeing has been impacted by the reported threat activity but it is unclear if Citrix exploit was used for data access.
  • Slow patch response and inadequate patches are believed to be causing mass exploitation.

Need to know more?

Party at Citrix's place

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is like the neighborhood watch, asking everyone to patch up their Citrix software, keep an eye out for any suspicious activity, and report back. But CitrixBleed, the infamous vulnerability, seems to be throwing a never-ending party that everyone wants a piece of.

Tardy to the Patch Party

Despite a patch being issued on October 10, organizations seem to be dragging their feet. It's like handing out free tickets to a concert and people are just tossing them in the trash. Rapid7 researchers are seeing a steady stream of compromises, impacting sectors ranging from retail to healthcare and manufacturing.

Lockbit crashes the party

Just when you thought it couldn't get worse, LockBit, a known threat group, seems to have joined the CitrixBleed exploitation spree. They've been linked to the reported threat activity against Boeing, but it's still a mystery if they used the Citrix exploit for their shenanigans.

Not all patches cover up

Despite the patch for the vulnerability, Citrix reported on October 23 that there were credible reports of session hijacking and targeted attacks. It seems like the patch is about as effective as a wet paper towel. Some security researchers are suspecting that a combination of slow patch response and patches that just aren’t providing enough protection are behind the mass exploitation.

Human error or patch error?

Dray Agha, U.K. threat operations manager at Huntress, suggests that system administrators might not be patching at the rate needed to deny threat actors from exploiting this flaw. But then again, we've seen cases where patches are evadable and adversaries spot small adjustments they need to make to their tools in order to re-exploit a flaw that we thought was patched. So, perhaps it's not just a case of 'patch and chill'.
Tags: CitrixBleed, LockBit, Network Security, patch management, Session Hijacking, Threat Groups, Vulnerability Exploitation