Exposed & Unpatched: Ticking Time Bomb of 17,000 German Exchange Servers!

In Germany, 17,000 Microsoft Exchange servers are sitting ducks for cyberattacks. It’s patching time, folks, or you’ll be duck soup for hackers! #CybersecurityBlues 🦆💻🚨

Hot Take:

Oh, Germany, land of precision engineering, pilsners, and apparently, Swiss cheese cybersecurity when it comes to Microsoft Exchange servers. With tens of thousands of servers as exposed as leiderhosen in a Bavarian breeze, it seems like the only things being efficiently exchanged are vulnerabilities. Prost to potential patching procrastination!

Key Points:

  • Germany’s cybersecurity authority, the BSI, has spotted roughly 17,000 Microsoft Exchange servers strutting their vulnerabilities on the Internet catwalk.
  • About 12% of these servers are old-timers from 2010 and 2013, retired from the update game and living in the past.
  • A not-so-cool 28% of the more modern 2016 and 2019 servers haven’t been patched in four months and are open to remote code execution attacks.
  • The BSI has been waving red flags since 2021, urging server admins to patch up but to little avail, as the patching party seems to be a real dud.
  • BSI’s prescription for these sick servers includes keeping current with Exchange versions, installing the latest security updates, and maybe a cozy VPN blanket for that OWA access.
Title: Microsoft Exchange Server Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability
Cve id: CVE-2024-21410
Cve state: PUBLISHED
Cve assigner short name: microsoft
Cve date updated: 02/14/2024
Cve description: Microsoft Exchange Server Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability

Need to know more?

Deutschland's Digital Dilemma

The German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) has done a headcount and found a staggering number of Microsoft Exchange servers that could easily be mistaken for sitting ducks at a hacker's shooting range. These servers, many of which cater to schools, hospitals, and local governments, are sitting pretty in the digital wild, just asking for trouble.

The Patchwork Quilt of Doom

It's patching season, or at least it should be, for the admins of these vulnerable servers. The BSI is practically singing from the rooftops, telling folks to update their digital threads. And not just any update, but specifically the March 2024 security updates with build numbers that sound more like secret agent codes. If only they were as exciting.

Access Denied (Hopefully)

The BSI isn't just about doom and gloom; they've also got some hot tips. Like maybe don't let your Exchange servers flash their services to the whole Internet. Perhaps treat OWA like a VIP club and only let in trusted IP addresses, or at least set up a VPN bouncer to keep things secure.

Extended Protection: Not Just for Toothpaste

There's a nasty privilege escalation vulnerability known as CVE-2024-21410 that's been doing the rounds, and the BSI is recommending a PowerShell script as the cure. Meanwhile, Shadowserver's been counting the potential victims and they've got numbers that'd make a bingo caller blush. But fear not, Microsoft's playing the hero by flicking the Extended Protection switch on with their latest updates.

A Patch in Time Saves Nine... Thousand Servers

Microsoft has been trying to get server admins to stay up-to-date like it's a new year's resolution worth keeping. After all, who wants to scramble for an emergency patch when you can be cool, calm, and collected with up-to-date servers? The BSI's message is clear: don't be that guy who's still running Windows 95 in a Windows 11 world.

Tags: Critical security updates, Extended Protection, Microsoft Exchange Vulnerabilities, Network Security, Outlook Web Access (OWA), Privilege escalation vulnerability CVE-2024-21410, unpatched servers